India cement prices stable, no plan for regulator

India cement prices stable, no plan for regulator
Published: 12 March 2008

Cement prices in India have stabilised since March 2007 and there was no plan to set up a separate regulator for the sector, Junior Industry Minister Ashwani Kumar said on Tuesday.

In a written reply to parliament, Kumar said the government abolished import duties and allowed state-run trading firms MMTC, TANCEM of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry Agro Services Industries Corp to import cement last year to bridge the demand-supply gap and stem price rise.

"With these measures, the average price of cement has stabilised to a large extent showing an increase of only 2.67 percent between March 2007 and January 2008," he said in a written reply to parliament.

India’s annual cement demand is rising by 10 percent as Asia’s third largest economy scales up infrastructure to sustain a high growth rate.

According to latest figures compiled by Cement Manufacturers’ Association of India, cement production during April-January rose seven per cent from a year earlier to 136.56Mt.