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20 Largest Cement Producing Countries in the World – Yahoo Finance

In this piece, we will take a look at the 20 largest cement producing countries in the world. If you want to skip our detailed introduction of the cement industry and want to just take a look at the top five biggest cement producing countries in the world, then head on over to 5 Largest Cement Producing Countries in the World.
Cement is the building block of modern day civilization and has enabled buildings that can last for decades and are more energy efficient as well since they are able to retain heat in the winter and allow for better cooling in the summer.
Therefore, the demand for cement in a country or a region often ends up being a proxy for economic growth as well. This is due to the logic that more cement demanded shows a vibrant real estate sector – and as we've explained before, real estate is quite closely tied to the economy of a country.
This would also imply that the cement industry is quite lucrative. After all, the global real estate industry was worth $3.69 trillion in 2021 – making it one of the most valuable sectors on the planet. As for cement, a research report from Markets Research Future estimates that the global cement industry was worth $324 billion in 2021 and grew to be worth $334.97 billion by the end of 2022. From then until 2030, the industry is expected to grow at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.27% to sit at an estimated $505 billion by the end of the forecast period. Naturally, regions with the highest expected economic growth namely Asia Pacific account for the largest share of the global cement market. Asia Pacific is expected to witness an increased demand for buildings and other structures growth and a rising population – both of which necessitate more construction.
Shifting to the volume of cement produced worldwide, the Global Cement and Concrete Association has a ton of statistics for us. Its data shows that a whopping 14 billion cubic meters of concrete were produced globally in 2021. In terms of weight, this production stood at 4.2 billion tons, and the market value of cement and concrete products combined was $440 billion.
However, even as cement production grows globally, like other sectors such as energy, its carbon impact is also increasing. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the direct CO2 intensity of cement production has grown by 1.5% annually between 2015 and 2021. However, the global body believes that to make this sector net zero by 2030, 3% annual declines are needed – in sharp contrast to historic trends. It adds that the largest contributor to cement production carbon emissions is the high use of clinker as the primary cement ingredient. Clinker, for those out of the loop, is crucial to cement production as it gives cement its high strength and biding properties which are essential to set it apart from other building materials.
Manufacturing cement without carbon produces what is called decarbonized cement, and since the industry itself is quite nascent, it has a higher growth rate than the traditional cement industry. At least that's what a research report from Exactitude Consultancy believes since it outlines that the green cement market was worth $22 billion in 2022 and it is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.7% between 2023 and 2029 to be worth an estimated $46.82 billion. Building on this, McKinsey believes that cement production accounts for 7% of global CO2 emissions, and to shift towards sustainable cement, the industry needs to embark on a broad based effort concentrated on a few steps. These include reducing clinker use, reducing the CO2 produced during the production process, and reusing the carbon dioxide produced in the production process.
So, which countries consume the most cement? Well, research from International Finance Corporation shows that China, India, U.S., Brazil, and Russia are the top five cement consuming countries in the world. As a fun exercise, you can also check out which of these countries also appear on our list of the countries with the highest greenhouse gas emissions. Looking at global cement exports, the Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC) believes that global cement trade stood at $14.8 billion in 2021 and that Vietnam was the world's largest cement exporter having sold $1.9 billion worth of products in the global market. After Vietnam, Turkey, UAE, Germany, and Thailand are the largest cement exporting countries.
Finally, two of the five largest cement producing companies are located in China, while one each is in the U.S., Germany, and Switzerland. Taking a look at what's going on in the market right now, here's what the management of Vulcan Materials Company (NYSE:VMC) shared during the firm's latest earnings call:
In asphalt, gross margins improved by 220 basis points despite higher natural gas and liquid asphalt cost and 11% lower volumes. Significant rainfall negatively impacted shipments in California and Arizona our largest asphalt markets. Prices improved by 15% and more than offset higher raw materials costs. Cash unit profitability in asphalt improved by 90% in the quarter. The concrete segments cash gross profit was negatively impacted by the 2022 divestiture of our New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania operations, as well as weather impacted volume in Texas and California, and the resulting cost challenges. Now shifting to the dynamic demand environment, which remains mixed, both in terms of end users and timing. We expect modest growth in overall public demand but contraction in private demand.
With these details in mind, let's take a look at the countries that produce the most cement. If you're interested in cement and materials stocks, then head on over to 11 Best Cement and Construction Materials Stocks To Buy Now.
Our Methodology
To compile our list of the world's biggest cement producing countries, we used data from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) and The European Cement Association (EMBUREAU) to narrow down cement production by country. The data from the USGS is for 2021 cement production by country while that from the EMBUREAU is for 2020. The final list of the world's biggest cement producing countries is as follows.
Cement Production in 2020 (million tons): 9.9
The Argentine Republic is a South American country. It has a $641 billion economy in nominal terms and is famous world over for its high inflation rate which crossed a painful 100% in 2023.
Cement Production in 2020 (million tons): 13
Canada is a developed North American country with a large land border with the United States. It is also one of America's largest trading partners and enjoys close and cordial relations with its neighbor.
Cement Production in 2020 (million tons): 13.2
The Republic of South Africa is one of the most developed countries in Africa. It has a diversified and industrialized economy, which also benefits from a strong mining industry.
Cement Production in 2020 (million tons): 16.7
The French Republic, commonly known as France, is one of the most developed countries in the world. A global economic and political powerhouse, France leads the world in fashion and defense production.
Cement Production in 2020 (million tons): 18.1
The Italian Federation, or Italy, is another developed European country. It has a vibrant agricultural industry, with Italian cheese and wine famous all over the world for their quality.
Cement Production in 2020 (million tons): 35.5
The Federal Republic of Germany is Europe's largest economy. Fueled by its world renowned automotive industry, the German economy is facing trouble these days as it deals with the after effects of relying on cheap Russian gas for its economic engine.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 40
The Arab Republic of Egypt is an Asian country. A developing nation, it has found itself plagued with the typical ills of the developing world including high currency depreciation, inflation, and unsustainable debt levels.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 48
The Republic of Korea, commonly known as South Korea, is an East Asian country. It is one of the most technologically advanced nations in the world, with growth fueled by large business enterprises known as chaebols.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 50
Like Canada, Mexico also shares a large land border with America. It also has one of the largest economies in the world, which currently sits at $1.4 trillion in nominal terms.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 52
Japan is an economic and technological powerhouse. Its economy, worth $4.2 trillion, is the third largest in the world despite the fact that Japan is the 62nd largest country in terms of area.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 55
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is an oil rich Middle Eastern nation. Relying on primarily its oil exports, Saudi Arabia has a $1 trillion economy.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 56
The Russian Federation is the largest country in the world in terms of landmass. Like Saudi Arabia, it is also rich in natural resources and has had significant infrastructure development starting from its Soviet era.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 62
The Islamic Republic of Iran is an Asian country whose economy has struggled to grow due to sanctions by the U.S.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 52
The Federative Republic of Brazil, or Brazil, has a $2 trillion economy and exports large amounts of oil and agricultural products.
Cement Production in 2021 (million tons): 66
The Republic of Indonesia is an Asian country made up of thousands of islands. It has a $1.3 trillion economy.
Click to continue reading and see 5 Largest Cement Producing Countries in the World.
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Disclosure: None. All investment decisions should be made after consulting a qualified professional. 20 Largest Cement Producing Countries in the World is originally published on Insider Monkey.
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