Maple Leaf Cement is expected to commence commercial production of 7,300 tons/day of clinkers from its new line starting next week. This was disclosed by the company in its quarterly progress report.
According to the stock filing to the Pakistan Stock Exchange, the cement maker revealed “After successful phase-wise commissioning test of installed equipment, the plant is in the trial run state. Commercial production from the new line of 7,300 tons per day is expected to commence next week.”
Maple Leaf set up an additional dry process clinker production line of 7,300 tons per day, a brownfield expansion at the company’s existing site in Iskandarabad in Punjab, to enhance total grey cement capacity up to 18,000 tons per day.
The total project is now estimated to complete at a revised cost of Rs. 26 billion. 59% of the cost of this project is being financed from debt and the remaining 41% from equity.
There are two to three new capacities which are coming up in the next few months but the demand nosedive has only worsened the situation. The PSDP cuts are making the situation even worse which has pushed the prices down.
Recently, the cement industry in the northern region of Pakistan witnessed a decline of Rs. 15-20 per bag in cement prices except Attock, which was safe from the decline in prices as it is located in the Southern region.
According to a business newspaper, the cement industry operates in a cartel. History suggests that the cartel breaks every time the industry goes into expansion mode.
Moreover, Attock Cement announced that the trial production at its newly constructed plant in Iraq had commenced on 15th of April.
Previously, in January, the company had informed that the entire civil, mechanical and electrical jobs on Iraq Project had been completed and the cement grinding unit was at commissioning stage.
“As soon as the permission is granted, the company would start the process of import of clinker and thereafter start the trial production,” said a notice issued by the Company on January 21, 2019.