Economy

Builders lobby for regulator to check cement prices

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on June 29, 2012

Seeks policy on alternatives to sand, updating contract law

The Builders Association of India has called for the establishment of a body to regulate cement prices, according to a press release.

The Association has also asked for policy to encourage use of alternative materials to sand and updating contract law.

Citing the recent action by the Competition Commission of India penalising 11 cement producers for manipulating the market, the Association said unfair trade practice by cement manufacturers impacts the construction industry.

This, in turn, affects the common man and the economy.

The Competition Commission recently imposed a fine of Rs 6,307 crore on the 11 large cement producers.

The Government should also permit duty free import of cement, it said.

Availability of sand, another major input, has been impacted following the constraints in dredging river sand.

But an alternative is needed as sand shortage has delayed major projects.

The policymakers should formally announce acceptable alternative material, encourage their use with incentives and initiate research for cost-effective and environment-friendly materials, the release said.

The Government follows the Contract Act, 1892 in its contract conditions. The law does not provide for price escalation or dispute resolution.

Over Rs 10,000-crore in payments to highway contractors is under dispute in various courts, the Association said.

A comprehensive labour law is also needed to replace over 30 legislations that do not benefit workers now.

The Government should also implement training programmes to improve worker productivity utilising the labour cess collected from contractors.

The association made the call at the inaugural of Baicon 2012 inaugurated by the Tamil Nadu Public Works Minister, Mr K.V. Ramalingam.

The 3-day event showcases construction equipment and technology.

>rbalaji@thehindu.co.in

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Published on June 29, 2012
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