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Pakistani cement manufacturers tackle rising energy prices

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World Cement,

Pakistan’s rising energy prices have forced local cement manufacturers to decrease their reliance on the national grid. Increasing energy tariffs have seen more and more cement producers turn to alternative methods of power generation, such as waste heat recovery and combined cycle plants (CCPs). CCPs use the heat of the gas turbine's exhaust to generate steam by passing it through a heat recovery steam generator.

According to reports, power accounts for around 68% of cement manufacturers total production costs. The cost of power attained through the national grid is approximately Rs15.5/kWh, while the cost of energy generated through CCPs is much lower, at around Rs5.5/kWh. Industry insiders noted that producers such as Lucky Cement Limited and DG Khan Cement Limited displayed the lowest energy costs per bag of cement produced in 2013, due to their reliance on alternative power generation. Lucky Cement recorded energy costs of Rs.106/bag in 2013, compared to an industry average of Rs.129/bag.

The use of waste heat recovery plants is additionally contributing to lower energy costs. The cost of power units recovered through waste heat recovery is around 80 – 90% lower than power generated through CPPs or obtained via the national grid. The use of alternative fuels, such as tyre-derived and refused-derived fuels, is also helping to decrease manufacturers’ reliance on coal for heating the kiln.

The Pakistani government remains committed to carrying out structural reforms in key areas of the economy, such as the energy sector. However, in order to fully tackle the country’s energy crisis, reforms need to be comprehensive and should expand to include management and administrative measures.

Edited from various sources by Rosalie Starling

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