Pakistan’s cement exports continue to fall

Pakistan’s cement exports continue to fall
Published: 03 September 2015

Tagged Under: Exports Pakistan 

Pakistan cement manufacturers and exporters during the month of July 2015 exported 469,406t of cement and earned export revenue of US$ 27.52m compared to 508,541t at US$30.25m in June 2015.

This was a  fall of 7.7 per cent and nine per cent in terms of quantity and value, respectively on MoM basis, says data of Pakistan Bureau of Statistics. But, if compared with data of July 2014 (553,226t at US$32.60m) the YoY fall deepened by 15.15 per cent and 15.56 per cent in terms of quantity and value, respectively in dollar terms.

Meanwhile the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA) states that exports to Afghanistan slipped by 3.28 per cent to 177,900t. Similarly, exports to India saw a negative growth of 31.51 per cent to 42,879t, followed by the rest of the world by five per cent.

An APCMA spokesman said that exports declined mainly because of non-tariff barriers erected by the Indian authorities and influx of Iranian cement in Afghanistan. In addition, he also attributed the lower volumes due to cement smuggling through the porous Pakistan-Iran border, emphasising the practice was a continuous threat to Pakistan's cement industry. He urged the government to revamp its export policies to boost exports. 

The spokesman added that the association has expressed reservations on various tax measures announced in the 2015-16 federal budget that would hurt investor sentiments in general and will particularly burden cement consumers in the country. These issues in particular are related to the three per cent super tax, amendments introduced in Section 8 of the sales Tax Act, 1990 for input tax adjustment and an increase in import duty on coal from one to five per cent. He emphasised that the industry is challenged by considerable issues including high power tariffs, axle load restrictions and power outages. He expects effective steps from the government to reduce the cost of operations to help the sector's competitiveness and boosts its worldwide sales.