Adverse weather hits cement sales in South Africa
Adverse weather has hit dement for cement and concrete in South Africa in January and February, according to a company update from PPC. Southern Africa's largest cement maker said that more than 200 mm of rainfall had been experienced in many parts of the country during the first two months of the year.
The company also noted a fall in retail selling prices of cement in key geographies, most notably in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Cement prices in the DRC have fallen about 28 per cent on the back of an influx of imports and the entry of a new producer into the market.
More generally, increased cement production capacity in Africa, combined with lower economic growth, has resulted in a fall in retail prices.
"The lower realizable retail selling prices of cement imply lower factory gate prices, which will put pressure on margins in these territories," the company warned - although the outlook in the DRC may be more positive, the company added. "Pricing in the DRC is expected to normalise once the government's cement import ban is reinstated