Demand for cement in Zimbabwe has declined as a result of sluggish activity in the country’s construction sector and difficult economic conditions.
Research by pan-African financial services company Imara Africa Securities revealed that supply and demand in the country’s cement industry is directly related to the performance of the domestic construction sector. Tonderai Maneswa, a financial analyst at Imara Africa, commented that retail buyers are currently driving demand. Improved activity on large-scale infrastructure and construction projects over the next few years is anticipated, which will expectantly provide a boost to the cement sector. However, the fate of the country’s economy remains ambiguous and larger projects in the mining industry, and various other sectors, may take longer to implement due to the fluid economic environment
Despite the fall in demand, two of Zimbabwe’s major cement players are investing in the country. PPC is reportedly undertaking feasibility studies at the Rushinga limestone deposit for the potential construction of a new US$250 million facility, with a designed capacity of 1 million tpa. Lafarge is investing some US$20 million in the refurbishment of its existing cement plant in order to boost volumes and increase capacity. The upgrade, due for completion next year, will increase the plant’s production capacity from 70% to 90%. The company are additionally conducting feasibility studies for the construction of a new plant to complement the existing one.
Edited from various sources by Rosalie Starling
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/africa-middle-east/13032014/declining_cement_demand_in_zimbabwe_889/