Our Bureau

New Delhi, Sept. 9

CEMENT consumption in the eastern and western parts of the country is driving the overall consumption during the current fiscal, while the southern region has witnessed a sharp dip in cement use during the period.

The fall in consumption in the southern region during the first half of the current fiscal has largely been on account of delays in implementation of Government projects, according to an ICRA report on the cement sector.

While the eastern and western regions have seen a growth of 13.8 per cent and 10 per cent, respectively, the northern region also witnessed a reasonable high growth of eight per cent over the corresponding period last fiscal.

The southern region, on the other hand, witnessed a 2.5 per cent decline, according to the report.

The regional disparity in the consumption growth has been attributed to the state of progress of large-scale Government projects, which have witnessed delays in the South, leading to a dip in overall consumption in the region.

According to the report, cement production and despatches witnessed a growth of 6.8 per cent and 6.7 per cent, respectively.

The domestic cement consumption of about 120 million tonnes was 6.3 per cent higher over the same period last year.

Cement exports have also been picking up, with a growth of 21 per cent recorded during the current fiscal, while clinker exports, in comparison, showed a lower growth of around 6 per cent.

Cement companies export around 4 million tonnes, which is around 3 per cent of the total production.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated September 10, 2005)
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