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Local cement production increasing

120712_03

K  Cement (Kampot) Ltd has recently increased their production as the local market demand continues its upward trend, according to the company’s chief executive.

K Cement (Kampot) Ltd Chief Executive Prak Sereyvathna said the company has increased its production capability by 12 per cent to 2,800 tons a day, compared to the same period in 2011, which saw production at the rate of 2,500 tons a day.

The company has also scaled up its supply line in response to the jump in the number of major projects by both by the government and private sector in this first six months of this year, he said.

Imported cement was competing in the local marketplace against products from local manufacturers, but it is not clear which was in greater demand, as the Ministry of Commerce did not disclose any import figures, he said.

“Normally, the newly-manufactured cement is better in quality than those produced long ago, especially the imported ones, which saw its quality deteriorate by almost half, compared to the local, newly-produced cement,” he said, adding that even though his company scaled up its production, Cambodia still needed to import more cement, because, as he observed, the demand outweighed the supply by local manufacturers.

“We could scale up [our production] to meet the local demand; however, Cambodia is a free marketplace where imported products could freely flow in, so we cannot exceed our plan.

“This increased 2,800-ton-per-day capability will see some products left for export; however, because of our higher electricity and transportation charges, we cannot realize our export plan,” he said.

Cheam Sothea, Marketing Manager at KP Industry Company, which imported Ha Tien cement from Vietnam, said  Cambodia’s demand for cement this year was the same as last year, which saw its import of 1,000 to 2,000 tons per year. He added that Thailand was the largest supplier of cement in the Cambodian market.

“I think K Cement’s ‘Elephant Trademark,’ which was manufactured in Kampot, is very popular, as Cambodians trust its quality. Another reason is it is locally-manufactured,” he said, adding that this trust had been earned, as the product was well-known because it had been imported from Thailand in the first instance.

He said Vietnam-manufactured Ha Tien cement was valued at $85 a ton in the Cambodian market.

Chhim Maocharo, a construction material seller near Chamkar Doung, said she observed that the K Cement products were in high demand during the last two months as they were often sold out.

“The sales of various cements were not far different; however, K Cement was the top. It is because these products were manufactured with cooperation with Thailand’s ‘Elephant Trademark’,” she said, adding that the K Cement sales in her retailer hit 100 tons a month, with a price of $98 per ton.

To contact the reporter on this story: Seun Son at son.seun@phnompenhpost.com

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