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LATEST CEMENT INDUSTRY NEWS
Ohorongo Cement makes special donation
In collaboration with Support e.V. Ulm, Germany, the Ohorongo Otavi Community Trust (OOCT), established by Ohorongo Cement, has donated specialist sunscreen to SINASRA in aid of the Namibian Albino Community. OOCT donated 1250 tubes of sunscreen worth an estimated N$18 000 to the cause.

Dr Peter Stoermer from SINASRA said that there are estimated to be more than 1600 people with albinism in Namibia, and that specialist sunscreen is required to prevent the occurrence of skin cancer. He noted that SINASRA is grateful for the donation, as these sunscreens are very expensive. They will be available free from hospitals throughout the country.

"We are very happy to be able to make a difference in the lives of people and it gives us true peace of mind knowing that people like Dr Stoermer and SINASRA are more than equipped to ensure that the entire Namibian Albino Community benefits from this donation," said Carina Sowden, Marketing & Communications Manager of Ohorongo Cement.
UAECEMENT.COM - Mar,05,2015

Qalaa Holdings proposes EGP1.7 billion capital increase
Qalaa Holdings Board of Directors has approved a capital increase of EGP1.7 billion to raise paid-in capital to EGP9.7 billion. The proposed capital increase will be primarily funded through the capitalisation of liabilities arising from the purchase of additional shares in core subsidiaries, particularly in energy and cement, from limited partners and co-investors. It comes as Qalaa finalises its transformation into a holding company with majority stakes in its core infrastructure and industrial investments. In this respect, this capital increase is a smaller, second and final version of the capital increase that Qalaa executed in 2014, which saw paid-in capital rise by EGP3.64 billion to EGP8 billion.

“With Egypt now on track for an economic recovery, the time is right to complete our transformation through the acquisition of additional stakes in the subsidiaries and business units that are best positioned to benefit from the upturn,” said Ahmed Heikal, Chairman and Founder of Qalaa Holdings, an African leader in infrastructure and industry.

“This will hasten our return to profitability during 2015, one year earlier than originally anticipated, and will open the way for dividend distribution in the coming years.”

UAECEMENT.COM - Mar,05,2015

Saudi Arabia: Arabian Cement gets US$107m loan
Arabian Cement Company has signed an agreement with Saudi British Bank for US$107m of Islamic financing. The loan is to be repaid over a period of five years, including a one-year grace period. Arabian Cement said that it will use the loan to finance part of the first phase of an expansion project to install two new cement mills.
UAECEMENT.COM - Mar,03,2015

Jordan: Northern Cement s Jordanian unit to add new clinker line
Northern Cement Co said that Northern Cement-Jordan, in which it holds 99.35%, has decided to install an additional clinker production line. In preparation for the expansion project, it will carry out feasibility and environmental studies. Northern Cement reported a net profit of US$62.5m in 2014, almost unchanged from US$62.6m in 2013.
UAECEMENT.COM - Mar,03,2015

Nigeria: Dangote Cement appoints Onne Van der Weijde as managing director
Dangote Cement has announced the appointment of Onne Van der Weijde as its new managing director. According to Dangote, the appointment is in furtherance of the implementation of strategies put in place to drive operational efficiency, support its ambitious growth strategies and delivering shareholder value.

Van der Weijde, who has a wealth of experience from working as the managing director of India s Ambuja Cement, will ensure that strategic, operational and brand synergies are maintained, while underlining renewed management focus on all customer segments. He worked to improve the profit and consolidation of the business and was also responsible for the acquisition and growth in marketing and sales.

As a director and business planning manager of Holcim (Australia), he developed a business presence in southeast Asia through joint ventures and acquisitions, providing support in the management of existing operations in the region. In addition to his role as manager, he was also the COO of India s ACC and a member of the senior management team of Holcim. He also became the CFO of Holcim (Indonesia). He was responsible for treasury, reporting, business planning, accounts and procurements. Van der Weijde represented Holcim in Switzerland as the senior vice president. He managed the international tax, audit, marketing and IT functions of Holcim (Asia).

UAECEMENT.COM - Mar,03,2015

Cement manufacturing cost to increase by US$0.11 – 0.16/bag
India: The manufacturing cost for cement is likely to go up by US$0.11 – 0.16/bag due to the proposed freight hike on various inputs and the cement itself. "The cost of production will go up in the range between US$0.11 – 0.16/bag," said a cement company spokesperson. He added that cement producers would most likely pass on the costs to their customers.

The Railway Budget proposals plan to increase freight rates of coal and slag, used in the manufacturing of cement, by US$0.74/t and by US$0.34/t respectively. A hike in cement freight rates of US$0.34/t has also been proposed, however, a reduced freight on limestone, by US$0.04/t, is also in the proposal.

"The freight rate hike is likely to increase our cost of production in the range between US$0.03 – 0.06/t. However, price is determined by demand and supply," said Mahendra Singhi, whole-time director of Dalmia Bharat Cement. Jaypee Cement s whole-time director Shiva Dixit said that although the freight rate hike would have an impact on input prices, they would wait for the main Budget to see the cost implication.

UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,28,2015

2015 International Safety Award winners announced
The 2015 International Safety Award winners have been announced, with 29 organisations awarded a distinction, 320 organisation given a merit and 165 organisations achieved a pass.

The awards, organised by the British Safety Council, recognise and celebrate the commitment of the winning organisations to keeping their workers and workplaces healthy and safe during the 2014 calendar year. Among the 514 winners were organisations from the UK, Africa, Asia, mainland Europe, the Middle East and the West Indies. The full list of winners can be seen at www.britsafe.org/isawinners.

Congratulating the winners, Neal Stone, acting Chief Executive of the British Safety Council, said: “The success criteria for the International Safety Awards is challenging and that rightly reflects the importance of achieving good standards of health and safety at work.

“The International Safety Awards shine a light on those businesses who are taking sensible and effective steps to protect employees from the risks of work-related injury and ill health, celebrating their efforts and encouraging other employers everywhere to give workers’ health and safety the priority it rightly deserves.”

He added: “Our vision is that no one should be injured or made ill at work, anywhere in the world, so it is heartening to see that winners of the 2015 International Safety Awards are truly international; from Aluminium Bahrain to Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas Limited; Delhi International Airport to the Rugby Football Union’s Twickenham Stadium in the UK.

“Winners are drawn from a broad range of sectors dealing with different risks – from the construction, housebuilding and civil engineering sector, with winners such as Bovis Homes, Costain, ISG, J Murphy & Sons and Willmott Dixon; to the oil and gas sectors, with winners such as Bahrain National Gas Company, Kuwait National Petroleum Company and Offshore Design Engineering Ltd of Great Yarmouth.

“The transport and distribution sector is also well represented, with winners such as Kenya Airways (Nairobi), MTR Corporation of Hong Kong and National Express’s Birmingham Coach Station in the UK.

“Our warmest congratulations to all of the winners.”
WorldCement.com - Feb,28,2015

3bn tons mineral reserves located in east Iran
Behrouz Borna told a meeting that any economic movement in the country starts with exploration of mines which is one of the main attractions for getting rid of the single-product oil-dependent economy.

Studies conducted on 7% of the span of the country have resulted in the location of 57 billion tons of mineral reserves of which about 37 billion tons are definite and the remaining are probable reserves, he added.

Meanwhile, Vice-Chairman of Iran Mine House, Mohammad Reza Bahraman said Iran’s position in terms of mineral reserves is unique in the Middle East, adding that the value of the located reserves is estimated at above $770 billion.

Under the present condition, he said, the located mineral reserves in the country have been estimated at about 60 billion tons and three percent of the world mineral reserves are in Iran.

The official also said that under the status quo efforts should be made to direct investments towards new explorations in the mining sector, adding that mines can play a major role in substituting oil in the budget.


Bahraman further remarked that cutting of dependence on oil revenues, paying special attention to other strategic industries such as steel, copper and cement and forming an economy dependent on domestic capability is tantamount to resistance against any inside and outside damage which will be attained through the will of the sympathizers in the country.



Iran stands in the 10th place in terms of diversity of mineral reserves and in the 15th place in terms of explored reserves in the world.
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,25,2015

Holcim 2014 cement sales fall 10.5% in Croatia, down 5.4% in Serbia
ZAGREB (Croatia)- The cement and clinker sales volume of Swiss building materials producer Holcim fell 10.5% in Croatia and was down 5.4% in Serbia in 2014, the company said on Monday.

Domestic cement prices rose by 0.5% in Croatia and by 0.3% in Serbia in 2014, Holcim said in a report posted on its website.
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,25,2015

Lucky Cement records Rs 5.60bn profit in July-Dec 2014
KARACHI: Lucky Cement Limited reported a considerable rise in its net profit for July to December 2014-15 fiscal year. It has recorded a net profit for half year December 31, 2014 of Rs 5.60 billion, which was 8.54 percent higher than profit of corresponding period last year.

Earnings Per Share (EPS) for six months period increased to Rs 17.32 against an EPS of Rs 15.96 of corresponding period last year. The Company s gross profits increased by 9.03 percent during period as its net sales revenue improved by 9.37 percent to Rs 21.41 billion against Rs 19.57 billion of corresponding period of last year.

The local sales volume of Company during period registered a growth of 9.20 percent and rose to 2.02 million tonnes as compared to 1.85 million tonnes of same period last year, whereas export sales volume registered a growth of 2.24 percent to 1.23 million tonnes as compared to 1.21 million tonnes of same period last year. The Company maintained its market share at a level of 19 percent.

During period under review combined sales revenue increased by 9.37 percent that was mainly contributed by increase in volumes.

Lucky Cement on its investments and ongoing projects including fully integrated cement manufacturing plant in Democratic Republic of Congo, grinding unit in Iraq, 1X660 megawatts (MW) supercritical coal based
power project, Waste Heat Recovery plants at Captive Power Plants, Vertical Grinding Mills at Karachi plant and 50 MW wind farm made satisfactory progress.Lucky Cement granted several scholarships programmes during period with the aim of equipping the
talented youth of the
country with access to
quality education.
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,25,2015

Egypt s Qalaa Holdings approves 1.7 bln Egyptian pound capital hike - sources
Qalaa Holdings, one of Egypt s largest investment companies, has approved a share swap with subsidiary companies that equates to a 1.7 billion Egyptian pound ($223 million) capital increase, two informed sources told Reuters on Saturday.

The move would be the firm s third capital hike since it listed on the Egyptian bourse in 2010 and comes as the company considers a series of money-raising divestments as it seeks a return to profit.

The increase would involve exchanging shares in the holding company for larger stakes in subsidiary companies, mostly in the energy and cement sectors, and would bring the company s capital to 9.7 billion pounds, the sources said, without giving any further detail.

"Qalaa s management decided that this will be the last increase," said another source.



No one at the firm could immediately be reached for comment.

On Wednesday the firm said it had hired investment bank EFG Hermes to advise it on the possible sale of its food businesses, a deal the conglomerate said would help it return to profit this year instead of 2016.

Qalaa, which is seeking to raise $300 million over the medium term through divestments, is considering selling confectioner Rashidi El-Mizan and dairy producer Dina Farms, Chairman Ahmed Heikal has said.

Qalaa has some $9.5 billion in assets under management, including dozens of firms mainly in Egypt, east and north Africa.
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,22,2015

Oman Cement Co records 2014 net profit slump
Oman Cement Co s net profit for the year 2014 declined by 12.8% to OR13.15m ($34m) from OR15.08m ($39m) in the previous year.

The company said the decline was mainly due to lower volume of cement sales, lower clinker production and higher volumes of imported clinker.

Oman Cement imported higher volumes of clinker to bridge the temporary shortfall due to one of its kilns being closed for capacity enhancement.

The company said it would consider a joint venture (JV) for setting up a new cement plant after detailed studies.

It said the $39m project for installing an additional cement mill of 150TPH (tonnes per hour) capacity with supporting infrastructure of cement silos and bulk despatches is in progress and is expected to be completed during the fourth quarter of 2015.

Oman Cement achieved sales of 2,078,937MT of cement during 2014 against 2,101,631MT in the previous year, a decrease of 1.1%.

In value terms, total sales dropped 2.05% last year to OR51.35m ($133.4m) from OR52.42m ($136m) in 2013.

“Market demand for cement in Oman remains good due to continued emphasis on infrastructure development. With the company s well-structured pricing policy, we hope that in spite of stiff competition with other cement manufacturers, particularly from neighbouring countries, the company will continue to do well to retain its market share,” a company statement read.

The cement producer said that government s decision to double the price of natural gas, effective January 1, is bound to have a major impact on its performance in the coming years.

“Similarly restrictions on carrying capacity for road transport of materials will also increase the cost of operations. However, we are committed to meet the challenge by directing our efforts towards better cost management.”
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,22,2015

Iran s annual exports to Iraq via Shalamcheh Border terminal up 137%
Abadan, Khuzestan prov, IRNA – Iranian exports to Iraq via Shalamcheh Border terminal during the current Iranian year (started March 21, 2014) shows 137% growth in terms of weight compared to the preceding period, according to a local official.
[Iran s annual exports to Iraq via Shalamcheh Border terminal up 137%]

Director of Customs House of Khorramshahr, southwestern province of Khuzestan, told IRNA on Tuesday that Iran exported $427.994 million worth of commodities to Iraq during the mentioned period which registered a 46% growth year-on-year.

Aref Bavi said that cement, different kinds of soil, vegetables, date and livestocks forage consist main Iranian goods exported to Iraq.
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,19,2015

Lafarge takes charge for Syria, Iraq assets
French cement group Lafarge on Wednesday took a 385 million euro ($439 million) charge for impairment of assets in Syria and Iraq, and said it saw cement market growth of between 2 and 5 percent in 2015 with growth coming mainly in emerging markets.

Lafarge said it still hoped to complete its planned merger deal with Swiss counterpart Holcim in the first half of this year as it delivered fourth quarter EBITDA earnings of 679 million euros, down 4 percent mainly due to negative exchange rate developments and in line with analysts expectations.

It predicted EBITDA in 2015 of between 3.0 and 3.2 billion euros and reaffirmed its existing cost-saving targets. ($1 = 0.8767 euros)
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,19,2015

Iran: Cement, clinker exports exceed 15.5m tons
Tehran, Feb 15, IRNA - Iran exported 15.9m tons of cement and clinker during March 21, 2014-January 20, 2015, said the secretary of the Guild Association of Iran’s Cement Industry.

Abdolreza Sheikhan made the statement on Saturday, adding that the figure is expected to reach 18m tons by mid-March 2015.

He noted during mid-March-mid-December, 2014, cement and clinker exports amounted to 14.5m tons.

Sheikhan listed Iran’s export destinations as Iraq, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Pakistan, Central Asian countries and the Persian Gulf littoral states.

He said Iranian cement has no rival in the Iraqi market in terms of quality and price.

“The association plans to identify new markets and boost export of clinker and cement, including those in Africa.”

At present, Iran’s share of the Iraqi market amounts to 60 percent.

He added, “About 90 percent of Iran’s cement are exported to foreign markets through roads. A large number of the cement production factories are not linked to railroad network and hence transportation is currently far more economical than using railroads for exports.”

Sheikhan said the removal of the Western sanctions imposed on the country will be effective in increased use of marine routes for cement and clinker exports.

In 2012, Iran exported 13.648m tons of cement and clinker, out of which 63 percent went to Iraq.

In the same time-span, cement output amounted to 70.25m tons.

Iran ranks first in cement production and exports in the Middle East. Because of its high quality, Iranian cement has a good market in neighboring countries.

Availability of raw materials, skilled workforce, indigenization of modern technologies, high quality and low prices are among the advantages of Iranian cement industry.

Currently, Iran produces 27 types of cement. Those involved in this industry believe that to expand export markets, Iran should facilitate trade, establish preferential tariff systems and help activate export organizations.
UAECEMENT.COM - Feb,17,2015


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