Local cement dispatches likely to surge 10-14%

LAHORE: Local cement dispatches across Pakistan are projected to increase by 10% to 14% for March 2024. Total dispatches are expected to reach around 3.20 million tonnes on a month-on-month (MoM) basis, with a projected decline of 3% to 7% on a year-on-year (YoY) basis.

In February 2024, cement sales remained low, primarily due to the election month, during which every sector anxiously awaited the election process and its results. Local cement dispatches in February 2024 were 2.86 million tonnes compared to the five-year average dispatches of 3.61 million tonnes in February.

Based on these sales figures, the average daily domestic sales for the sector are expected to reach 103.1 thousand tonnes/day in March 2024, which is still lower than the five-year average March sales of 127.1 thousand tonnes/day. The YoY decline in local cement dispatches is attributed to a slowdown in construction activities due to higher construction input costs and the high base effect of the previous year, when cement dispatches increased due to flood-related construction activities. The implementation of axle load regulations, which caused issues in transporting cement, was another reason for declining cement dispatches.