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UK construction industry continues to grow
The Construction Products Association s Construction Trade Survey for 3Q17 shows that, despite rising costs and diverging performance across sectors, the industry extended its run of growth to eighteen quarters. The survey of main constractors, SME builders, civil engineering firms, product manufacturers, and specialist contractors, found that the construction supply chain reported increase in sales, output, and workloads in the quarter, driven by increased demand in private housing, repair, and maintenance and infrastructure. Net balances for enquiries and expected product sales for the year ahead remained muted, however, and contractors order books were sustained by work in only three sectors: private housing, housing R&M, and non-housing R&M. New orders were reported lower in sectors such as commercial, industrial, and public non-housing, which account for one-third of construction output. The effects of the Sterling s depreciation in the second half of 2016, following the EU Referendum, are still pervasive, with 92% of main contractors, 85% of heavy side manufacturers and all light side manufacturers reporting a rise in raw materials costs in 3Q17. In spite of this, only a small proportion of contractors are increasing tender prices and, as a result, 31% of main contractors reported a fall in margins, the worst balance in five years. Commenting on the survey, Rebecca Larkin, Senior Economist at the CPA, said: "This 18th consecutive quarter of growth reported by the industry stands in contrast to the construction recession in preliminary GDP data from the ONS. There is a clear division in fortunes across sectors, however, with weakness in the commercial and industrial sectors offset by strength in new build private housing, a sector where demand and confidence remain supported by the Help to Buy equity loan. "In common with the wider economy, the construction industry continues to experience cost inflation, particularly for raw materials. A clear consequence of the supply chain trying to absorb these higher costs is the fall in contractors profit margins since the start of the year. Combined with a smaller pipeline of upcoming work in some key sectors, the survey s more mixed view on near-term industry prospects is not surprising." Suzannah Nichol, Chief Executive of Build UK said: "The latest Construction Trade Survey result highlights the industry s continued growth, contrary to ONS s statistics, with both contractors and specialist contractors reporting a rise in output during Q3. However, a lack of required skills remains a concern, with labour availability issues continuing to impact on contractors business performance. Build UK believes industry needs to recruit, train and retain a skilled workforce and we are working with members, government and other key stakeholders to ensure that this remains a key priority." CECA Director of External Affairs, Marie-Claude Hemming, said: "It is good news that our members see growth in infrastructure, to the benefit of businesses and communities across the country. However, uncertainty continues to act as a drag on the ability of the construction industry more generally to boost the economy. Ahead of the Autumn Budget, we are calling on the UK Government to commit to the projects outlined in the National Infrastructure Delivery Plan, to secure the foundations of a strong economy, drive productivity, and deliver post-Brexit growth."
UAECEMENT.COM - Nov ,12,2017

Rudny Cement plant delayed to 2018
Kazakhstan: The opening of the Rudny Cement plant has been delayed to 2018. The regional government said that the US$44m project is in the final stage of completion, according to Interfax. The 0.5Mt/yr plant has been postponed several times since 2010 due to a lack of finance. The most recent plan was to start production by the end of 2017. /Source: Global Cement
UAECEMENT.COM - Nov ,11,2017

Oman Cement to upgrade power plant
Oman Cement is to upgrade the power plant that supplies its cement plant, as part of its programme of investment to reduce costs and raise productivity. The company has been under pressure from cheap imports, as well as rising costs. “In order to improve the performance of [the] power plant and achieve higher efficiency and cost reductions in its operations, a decision has been taken to upgrade the power plant with the latest technology turbine,” the company said in its latest quarterly report. The upgrade to the power plant follows the installation of a new cement mill, which has allowed Oman Cement to increase production levels. The company also has ongoing work to improve the pollution control equipment and install new packing and truck loading equipment. Oman Cement is one of two cement producers in the Middle Eastern country. It recently announced an 8% increase in cement production in the first nine months of the year. Sales volumes were also up 9.59%, although pre-tax profits were down, on the back of lower prices. /WorldCement
UAECEMENT.COM - Nov ,5,2017

Workers launch global union network at HeidelbergCement
Germany: Union delegates representing workers at HeidelbergCement have created a trade union network. Forty delegates from Europe, Middle East and North Africa, North America, Asia-Pacific and South Asia met in early November 2017 in Bremen. The meeting was organized by IndustriALL Global Union with support of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, also involving IndustriALL s sister organisation Building and Wood Workers International. “With the creation of the HeidelbergCement union network, we open the door to social dialogue if management is willing, and we hope union activists will contribute seriously to the promotion of workers rights and interests in the company. To this end, the steering committee will be in close interaction with the national unions. Finally, we strongly believe that HeidelbergCement will only win through workers active participation and engagement,” said Matthias Hartwich, director for materials industry at IndustriALL. The meeting discussed recent developments in the cement sector and sustainability issues. The experience of global and national unions interacting with management at another big cement giant company, LafargeHolcim, was also raised. At the end of the meeting, delegates unanimously adopted a Bremen declaration and elected a steering committee for the network, which will coordinate the work in between its global meetings. No representative of the group s global management attended the event despite being sent invitations. /Global Cement
UAECEMENT.COM - Nov ,4,2017

Saudi Cement profit slumps 51.5% in first nine months of 2017
Saudi Arabia: Saudi Cement Company has seen its profit drop by 56.9% year-on-year in the third quarter of 2017. Its net profit fell to US$23.2m from US$53.7m in the third quarter of 2017. The profit was 7.5% lower than the second quarter of 2017. Saudi Cement Company attributed the decrease to falling sales, the decline of the firm s stake in net financial results of associate companies and a fall in other revenues. During the first nine months of 2017 the company’s net profit was 51.5% down year-on-year, falling to US$92.3m compared to US$190.4m in the first nine months of 2016. /Global Cement
UAECEMENT.COM - Oct ,25,2017

LafargeHolcim inaugurates new Algerian plant
LafargeHolcim has inaugurated a new cement plant in Algeria. The state-of-the-art CILAS plant in Biskra, 400 km south of Algiers, is the most recent plant to join LafargeHolcim s global fleet of cement production facilities and boasts the tallest vertical grinder in the world. The plant was construction as a joint venture with Souakri Group at cost of DZD35 billion (US$306.6 million). The plant has a capacity of 2.7 million tpy and was built in to meet the growing need for cement in the south of the country. The plant will also reduce energy consumption by 35% and gas consumption by 20%. “The new CILAS plant has set a range of ambitious targets, grounded in operational excellence, the health and safety of our employees and subcontractors, reduction of our environmental footprint, reduction of our energy consumption, and of course bringing the full range of benefits to our clients,” the company said on its website. /WorlCement
UAECEMENT.COM - Oct ,20,2017

Cement shipments increase in July 2017
USGS has released its Mineral Industries Survey, reporting on cement shipments during July 2017. Total shipments of portland and blended cement in the United States and Puerto Rico in July 2017 were about 8.5 million t, up by 3.4% from shipments in July 2016. The leading producing States for portland and blended cement in July 2017 were Texas, Missouri, California, Florida, and Michigan, in descending order, and these accounted for 42% of the month s total sales. The leading cement-consuming States (Texas, California, Florida, Ohio, and New York, in descending order) received about 38% of the July shipments. Shipments for the year through July were 53.2 million t, up by 2.0% from those during the same period in 2016. Masonry cement shipments of about 202 000 t in July 2017 were essentially unchanged from those in July 2016. The leading masonry-cement-consuming States were, in descending order, Florida, Texas, California, North Carolina, and Georgia; these States received 54% of the July shipments. Masonry cement shipments for the year through July were 1.42 million t, up slightly from those of the same period in 2016. Clinker production totalled 7.2 million t in July 2017, up by 4.6% from the output in July 2016 (table 4). The leading clinker producing States in July were, in descending order, Texas, California, Missouri, Florida, and Pennsylvania, and these States accounted for 48% of the month s total production. Clinker production for the year through July totalled 43.0 million t, significantly unchanged from that of the same period in 2016. Data for clinker imports into the Seattle, WA, and the Detroit, MI, customs districts do not include material trucked in from Canada on an informal entry basis. Likewise, imports of cement into the El Paso, TX, district are missing significant informal entries from Mexico. For some time, imports have been increasing at rates generally higher than those for cement sales overall. In part, this reflects the collapse of imports during the recession (hence a low basis for comparison), but also the relatively low cost of imports resulting from a combination of low bunker fuel costs, modest ship chartering rates, increased ship availability, and a strong dollar. In some regions, imports offset domestic production constraints related to difficulties in bringing long-idle extra kilns back online. Also, clinker imports had increased temporarily to maintain cement output at certain plants that were undergoing kiln line upgrades. With the recent completion of one such major project, clinker imports have returned to more normal levels. July 2017 imports of cement and clinker of about 1.4 million t were almost 5% lower than those in July 2016. Imports for the year through July totalled 7.7 million t, essentially unchanged from those of the same period in 2016. The 2017 total is understated by January imports of nearly 28 000 t of gray portland cement imported into the San Francisco Customs district under a tariff code for another commodity. /Source: World Cement
UAECEMENT.COM - Oct ,09,2017

Pioneer Cement signs deal to buy Galadari Cement
Pakistan: Pioneer Cement has signed a memorandum of understanding to buy Galadari Cement (Gulf). Galadari Cement has been building its plant at Hub Choki in Balochistan since 1998, according to the News International newspaper. The unit is 50% complete. No amount for the sale has been disclosed but it is estimated to be around US$66m. /Source: Global Cement
UAECEMENT.COM - Oct ,09,2017

Board of Investments clears Eagle Cement for expansion of Bulacan plant
Philippines: The Board of Investments (BOI) has approved Eagle Cement s application to build a third production line at its Bulacan cement plant. The cement producer plans to increase the site s clinker production capacity to 4.2Mt/yr from 2.8Mt/yr and its cement production capacity to 7.1Mt/yr from 5.1Mt/yr, according to the Philippine Star newspaper. The upgrade has a cost of around US$138m. The BOI, part of the attached agency of Department of Trade and Industry, has also approved an application by Eagle Cement s subsidiary South Western Cement Corp. (SWCC) to become a new cement producer on a non-pioneer status but with pioneer incentives.
UAECEMENT.COM - Oct ,03,2017

FLSmidth to supply new mill to India Cements Ltd
FLSmidth will deliver an OK vertical cement mill to The India Cements Ltd, one of the leading cement producers in southern India. The new OK 52-4 mill system will be installed on India Cement s production line in Shankar Nagar in Tamil Nadu. FLSmidth will deliver an OK vertical cement mill to The India Cements Ltd, one of the leading cement producers in southern India. The new OK 52-4 mill system will be installed on The India Cement s production line in Shankar Nagar in Tamil Nadu. The Danish engineering company will carry out system engineering, procurement, and machinery supply. The new mill will have production capacity of 200 tph of ordinary portland cement at 3500 Blaine. The contract also includes the supply of gear units from FLSmidth MAAG Gear. The new contract “reflects the strong position we have had with India Cements Ltd for almost a decade,” said Carsten Riisberg Lund, Country Head of FLSmidth India. According to FLSmidth, the installation of the OK mill will enable the customer to reduce energy costs, as it will replace a ball mill at the plant. The contract will be fully executed by the end of 2018. A previous version of this article referred to the mill as an OK 53-4. It is in fact an OK 52-4. This has been corrected above. /Source: worldCement
UAECEMENT.COM - Sep ,21,2017

Algeria to stop cement imports in 2018
Algeria: Mohamed Benmeradi, the minister of commerce, says that Algeria will stop importing cement in 2018. He stated on national radio that the country is producing enough cement and is now considering exports, according to the Liberté Algerie newspaper. The government is amending the import licence system to encourage local growth. /Source: Global Cement
UAECEMENT.COM - Sep ,21,2017

Attock Cement reports increase in pre-tax profits
Pakistani cement marker, Attock Cement, has reported an increase of 4.9% in pre-tax profits to PKR4.47 billion, as sales for the financial year ending 30 June strengthened. Net sales were PRK14.74 billion, compared to PKR13.92 billion in FY2016, on the back of an uptick in cement dispatches to 2.08 million t. The company s costs were mixed: energy costs rose as the coal price jumped 41% year-on-year in the final quarter. However, the company benefitted from lower transport costs, as more of its cement was sold into the local market, amid a contraction in exports.
UAECEMENT.COM - Sep ,16,2017

Dangote Cement confirms talks with PPC
South Africa: Nigeria s Dangote Cement has confirmed its interest in bidding for PPC. The company said that its board of directors had communicated to the board of PPC but that the dialogue was at a preliminary stage. The offer follows offers by Canada s Fairfax Financial Holdings with AfriSam and other unnamed bids.
UAECEMENT.COM - Sep ,16,2017

Pioneer Cement to install four Loesche mills
Loesche is to supply four vertical roller mills (VRMs) for a new cement production line at Pioneer Cement s plant in Chenki/Khushab region of Punjab province, Pakistan. The new line will expand the plant s production to around 8000 tpd. The four VRMs will be used for grinding cement raw meal, clinker, and coal, Loesche said in a press release. The raw meal mill will have throughput of 630 tph; two cement mills will have a processing capacity of 235 tph each; and the coal mill will have a capacity of 60 tph. The raw meal mill will also be supplied with a HURRICLON cyclone technology from Loesche subsidiary, ATEC. According to the German engineering company, “HURRICLON technology plays an important part in reducing the total energy requirement of the plant, due to the low pressure loss and high degree of separation.” In addition, the HURRICLON system reduces the steel construction and installation costs, as a result of its lower weight compared to conventional cyclone technology. Loesche Dynamic Classifier (LDC) is already used in the plant and will ensure appropriate fineness in the cement grinding circuit. “The patented vortex rectifier and optimised flow characteristics [of the LDC] produce significantly lower energy consumption and therefore lower operating costs,” the company said. The order was placed through Chengdu Design & Research Institute, part of Sinoma International Engineering, which has been contracted to install the plant. Following installation of the VRMs, a total of 32 Loesche mills will be located in Pakistan.
UAECEMENT.COM - Sep ,13,2017

CHP fined by Filipino environmental regulator
CEMEX Holdings Philippines (CHP) has been fined PHP50 000 for violating its environmental permit. The fine relates to September 2015 incident, when heavy fuel oil overflowed its storage tank at CHP s subsidiary, SOLID Cement Corp., during a period of strong winds and heavy rain. The incident was among items disclosed in CHP s prospectus for its initial public offering last year. The fine was imposed by the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. Despite issuing the fine, the EMB also recognised SOLID Cement s “swift response to the situation. According to the bureau, the spill was cleaned-up within seven days of the incident, while a water sampling test conducted after the spill returned “good results”. The fine will not have a material adverse impact on CHP s operations, liquidity, and financial condition, the company said. CHP is the second largest cement producer in the Philippines, but recently reported a 46% fall in net income in 2Q17, a result of lower prices and volumes, and higher operating expenses. The company was also hit by a longer-than-expected shutdown at its AOP plant in Cebu.
UAECEMENT.COM - Sep ,10,2017


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