What a year that was...

Published 03 January 2023

Global cement consumption declined by more than five per cent in 2022 – a level not seen since the 1970s. As a new year starts, BNP Paribas Exane provides a first look at what can be expected in the global cement sector in 2023. While some challenges remain, it appears that some headwinds are at least subsiding. By Paul Roger, BNP Paribas Exane.

Figure 1: EBITDA scenario, 2022E

Last year was quite a rollercoaster. Global cement consumption fell by 230Mt or over five per cent – dragged down by Chinese lockdowns and a second-half slowdown in Europe. This was the biggest contraction since the 1970s. Meanwhile, costs skyrocketed following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the industry responded with unprecedented price hikes. Cement prices increased almost 15 per cent YoY globally, with more dramatic rises in countries ranging from Italy to Ghana. It was not enough. BNP Paribas Exane estimates the industry’s worldwide EBITDA declined by 25 per cent YoY in local currency terms (see Figure 1). There were a few bright spots such as Egypt (where the government imposed production caps). But, for most, 2022 was a year to forget.

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