Preparing for a financial crisis

Published 30 June 2020

Dr Michael Clark looks at how the global health emergency of the COVID-19 pandemic is expected develop into a financial crisis, and the potential impacts of this for the cement industry. By looking back over the past 30 years, we can see the effects the Asian financial crisis and the global financial crisis had on the sector. With this in mind, what can we expect in the near future?

The Asian financial crisis originated in Thailand and was fuelled by

credit extensions made to support a boom in construction

Back in 2018, Thomas Armstrong, managing editor of International Cement Review (ICR), asked Dr Clark to reflect on what had changed in the cement industry over the past 30 years to coincide with ICR’s 30th anniversary. Dr Clark went on to present the same topic at the Cemtech conferences in Hanoi and Istanbul in 2018. Both the article and the presentations reviewed the huge changes in the industry over those first three decades of ICR.

At the conferences, Dr Clark signed off with the observation that there was another way to characterise the 30 years of ICR – this was through the financial crises at roughly 10-year intervals. Starting around 10 years after the launch of ICR, there was the Asian financial crisis in 1997-99. Another 10 years later, there was the global financial crisis.

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