ISLAMABAD: The cement dispatches decreased by 7.10% in February 2023 as a result of the worsening economic condition, import restrictions, and halted building operations. The total amount of cement shipped this month was 4.040 million tonnes, compared to 4.348 million tonnes sent in the same month previous fiscal year.
The country’s economic condition is reportedly becoming more problematic every day, according to insiders in the business. The economic crisis has caused major operating issues for the cement sector.
According to statistics made public by the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA) on Friday, the sector shipped 3.590 million tonnes of domestic cement in February 2023 as opposed to 3.943 million tonnes in February 2022, a decrease of 8.96%. When the volume climbed from 405,489 tonnes in February 2022 to 449,940 tonnes in February 2023, export despatches increased by 10.96%.
Cement mills in the north produced 3.014 million tonnes in February 2023, a decrease of 7.42% from the 3.255 million tonnes produced in February 2022. Cement mills in the South shipped 1.025 million tonnes in February 2023, 6.13% less than the 1.093 million tonnes they shipped in February 2022.
In February 2023, cement mills in the north sent 2.949 million tonnes of cement to domestic markets, a decrease of 8.26% from the 3.215 million tonnes shipped in February 2022. In February 2023, mills in the south sent 640,645 tonnes of cement to regional markets, a 12.04% decrease from the 728,302 tonnes shipped in February 2022.
When the amounts climbed from 40,902 tonnes in February 2022 to 64,717 tonnes in February 2023, exports from mills with a northern base increased by 58.22%. Moreover, exports from the south climbed by 5.66%, from 364,587 tonnes in February 2022 to 385,223 tonnes in February 2023.
Total cement shipments (domestic and export) for the first eight months of the current fiscal year were 29.81 million tonnes, which is 16.65% less than the 35.763 million tonnes shipments made during the same period of the previous fiscal year. Domestic shipments fell by 13.39% during this time to 27.207 million tonnes from 31.416 million tonnes during the same period prior year. Although volumes decreased to 2.602 million tonnes during the first eight months of the current fiscal year compared to 4.348 million tonnes exported during the same time of the previous fiscal year, export despatches were also 40.15 percent lower.
During the first eight months of the current fiscal year, North-based mills shipped 22.327 million tonnes of cement domestically, a decrease of 14.42% from the cement despatches of 26.089 million tonnes during July 2021–February 2022. As compared to the same time in the previous year, northern exports climbed by 13.21% to 678,006 tonnes between July 2022 and February 2023. For the first eight months of the current fiscal year, total despatches by north-based mills decreased from 26.688 million tonnes during the same time previous fiscal year to 23.005 million tonnes, a 13.80% decrease.
Domestic cement shipments made by mills in the south between July 2022 and February 2023 were 4.880 million tonnes, a decrease of 8.38% from the 5.327 million tonnes of cement sent during the same time of the previous fiscal year. As compared to the 3.749 million tonnes shipped during the same time previous year, southern exports fell by 48.67% to 1.924 million tonnes between July 2022 and February 2023. For the first eight months of the current fiscal year, total despatches by mills with southern locations decreased by 25.03% to 6.804 million tonnes from 9.076 million tonnes during the same time previous fiscal year.
A representative for the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association said in a statement that the sector required a timely supply of consumables and replacement parts to guarantee the facilities’ reliable operation. “We encourage the government to come-up with realistically relevant and industry friendly policies in order to allow the industry to get out of this tough circumstance,” he said.