Cement sales growth to slow down in 2012

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Growth in cement sales in Indonesia is expected to decline next year due to a global economic slowdown, president director of PT Semen Gresik Tbk., Dwi Soetjipto, said.

"I am predicting cement sales will only grow 4.0 to 5.0 percent next year or lower than this year`s record of 16 percent," he said here Wednesday.

He said the global crisis would curb cement consumption although its impact was not yet being felt by the domestic cement business.

PT Semen Gresik is Indonesia`s biggest cement company having a production capacity of 20 million tons a year.

The company is a market leader controlling 41 percent share in the domestic market.

Until the third quarter of 2011 domestic cement sales rose 16 percent to 34.3 million tons while exports dropped 55 percent to 947,000 tons.

Based on data from the Indonesian Cement Producers Association (ASI) sales still increased in October 2011 by 22 percent to 4.7 million tons. The hike was driven by property and infrastructure sectors.

"So far the two sectors have been the biggest consumers of cement," ASI chief Urip Trimuryono said.

Urip said the growth in October was lower than in September which was at 52 percent while in August sales dropped by three percent.

Urip predicted cement sales this year could increase by eight percent. Last year sales reached 40 million tons out of the installed capacity of 53 million tons a year. Until October 2011 cement sales reached 39 million tons. (*)