Pakistan: Data from the All Pakistan Manufacturers Association (APCMA) shows that local cement industry recorded a 37% year-on-year surge in dispatches during August 2023, with total shipments reaching 4.52Mt, up from just 3.29Mt in August 2022. While impressive on the surface, this appears to represent a return to normality following nationwide disruption due to massive flooding in the summer of 2022.
The APCMA’s data shows that a significant driver of this growth was the domestic market, where cement dispatches rose by 30% to 3.79Mt, compared to 2.91Mt in August 2022. Simultaneously, exports surged by 87%, with volumes growing from 387,440t in August 2022 to 724,777t in August 2023.
Cement plants in the north of Pakistan dispatched 3.25Mt in August 2023, marking a 25% increase from the 2.0Mt dispatched in August 2022. In the southern region, plants dispatched 1.27Mt of cement, an 81% rise compared to the 700,436 tonnes in August 2022.
Exports from northern-based plants increased by 79%, from 91,963t in August 2022 to 164,195t in August 2023. Similarly, southern mills reported a significant increase, with exports surging by 90% to 560,582t in August 2023, up from 295,477t during the same month in the previous year.
An APCMA spokesperson emphasised the industry’s challenges, including rapid currency depreciation, soaring petroleum prices and rising electricity tariffs. These factors are driving up production costs and affecting transportation, potentially impacting consumer prices. The spokesperson urged the government to address these issues to support the industry as it navigates this ‘challenging terrain.’