Construction Materials discussion

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    This topic is about different construction materials discussion. Quality and quantity check along with latest prices.

    Mohsin Munir

    Cement prices go up by Rs10 per bag in northern region

    By Farhan ZaheerPublished: March 2, 2018

    KARACHI: After deliberating for months, cement companies in the north have raised prices by Rs10 per bag, industry officials said on Thursday.

    Rising cement demand in the region has given companies the confidence that demand will not be affected if prices are increased. In case the move does not affect sales, cement companies may go for a further increase in prices in the coming months.

    “Cement companies wanted to pass on the impact of rising international coal prices to consumers for a while. Now they have decided to go on,” JS Research analyst Faizan Ahmed commented.
    Most companies feel that this is the right time to raise prices as the winter season is ending and more people are going to opt for construction work, which results in higher cement demand in the market, he added.

    After declining by Rs10 per bag in January 2018, cement prices in the northern region largely remained stable at an average of Rs505 per bag in February 2018.

    However, with the recent hike of Rs10 per bag, cement prices in the region now stand at an average of Rs515 per bag. However, cement prices in the southern region remain unchanged and are unlikely to be raised in the near term with the average price already at a premium of 14% against its northern counterparts (average of Rs585 per bag), according to AKD Research report.

    Cement prices in the north region declined by almost 11% or Rs60 per bag since June 2017, contrary to the south region where prices have so far remained stable.

    Industry officials say cement companies in the north region were not able to increase prices because of a price war – a situation in which companies sell their products on a lower price to remain relevant in a competitive environment and keep market share intact.

    Local cement demand was up 16-17% year on year in the first eight months (Jul-Feb) of the fiscal year 2017-18.

    “Our discussion with manufacturers suggests that a further hike in prices cannot be ruled out in coming months due to robust cement demand,” Topline Securities reported on Thursday.

    This development should alleviate investors’ concerns over pricing to some extent. To note, north producers have been selling cement at a discount of Rs20-30 per bag for some months now despite stellar local cement demand.

    South African coal prices, after peaking at $98 per ton in fiscal year 2017-18 to date, have come down to about $93 per ton as of last closing. Future contracts from October 2018 onwards are trading below $90 per ton. Higher local prices coupled with softening coal futures should provide support to margins of cement manufacturers in future, the research report added.

    Published in The Express Tribune, March 2nd, 2018.

    Mohsin Munir

    Cement prices rise further as demand picks up
    By Usman HanifPublished: April 4, 2018

    KARACHI: Cement prices have gone up continuously in the country over the past three to four weeks apparently in the wake of pickup in development work ahead of general elections in the middle of this year.

    Prices have been increased by up to Rs60 per bag, including a rise of Rs10 in the past couple of days, according to market players.

    Lahore recorded the largest increase of Rs50 to Rs60 that took the price of a cement bag to Rs590.
    Cement prices traditionally stay low in the northern region compared to the southern areas, particularly Karachi, but currently the price gap has shrunk.

    “An extraordinary price increase in Lahore is apparently due to development work ahead of general elections and may come down after two to three months,” said analyst Saqib Hussain Khan of Sherman Securities.

    However, other industry watchers believe the price may not revert to previous levels as the market is facing price pressure.

    “Hike in coal prices, rupee plunge of about 5% on March 20 and strong demand were the factors which led to this hike in cement prices,” commented Atif Zafar of JS Global Capital Limited.

    Average prices across the country rose from Rs521 on February 26 to Rs543 on April 2 with average weekly increase of more than 0.7%, according to the weekly price update of Arif Habib Limited’s Investor Watch.

    Rapid large-scale infrastructure development under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and hefty allocation for the Public Sector Development Programme have propelled cement demand in the domestic market.

    Cement prices have swelled more than double since 2013 from Rs250 to Rs590 per bag, said Wali Bhai Patel, a Karachi-based cement dealer.

    Pakistan’s cement production depended on exports for a long time, but for the past few years, domestic needs have provided a vital cushion on the back of improving macroeconomic indicators and expanding construction activities.

    Dynamics of the cement market are changing fast in Pakistan as half a dozen companies are going through an expansionary phase with combined investment of over $1.5 billion.

    Cherat Cement, Attock Cement, DG Khan Cement, Lucky Cement, Power Cement, Bestway Cement and others have unveiled their expansion plans and all these projects will come on line in the next couple of years.

    Published in The Express Tribune, April 4th, 2018.

    Mohsin Munir

    Construction costs up
    Business Recorder RESEARCH APR 5TH, 2018

    With a backlog of at least 12 million houses across the country, the demand for housing is on a consistent incline, and some estimates suggest, every year this shortage expands by 100,000 houses. Among other reasons, property price hikes and continually rising building and material costs have exacerbated this gap. And there doesn’t seem to be any slow-down either. Several domestic and international factors are coming into play in the cement and steel industries that will inflate construction prices going forward.

    Let’s look at cement. The commodity is one of the flourishing industries in the country growing on the back of CPEC and infrastructure related development across the country. The sector’s LSM growth in 7MFY18 was 10 percent year on year while its domestic sales were up by 19 percent in 8MFY18. Despite falling exports, the sector reached 91 percent capacity utilization during the period and in some months, reached 99 percent utilization.

    Earlier this year, cement prices had started to slide down particularly in the north because of Cherat Cement’s expansion, but they have started to revive back strongly now. In fact, the industry raised the prices by Rs10 per 50-kg bag in February, promising to follow up with additional price increases. Since, cement prices have climbed by Rs60 per bag. (Read “Cement’s recovering confidence”, March 8, 2018).

    According to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), the average price of a cement bag end of March was Rs543; against Rs548 this time last year. After the latest hike, this average may have gone further up. But more importantly, prices could continue to move in that direction.

    As a rule, anything that is imported as finished product or is an input in manufacturing will be more expensive given the rupee devaluation. The rupee depreciation of 9 percent against dollar has automatically increased import costs. The cement sector imports coal as a major raw material that has itself seen a price hike globally. Together with the weakening rupee, the higher costs had to be passed onto the consumer, given that the industry is confident it won’t lose its market if it did. After all, there is no chance of the sector entering overcapacity stage since demand is growing, capacity utilization is at its optimum levels already and most of the expansions in the north have been temporarily put to a halt by order of the Supreme Court.

    Another big contributor in building costs is steel. The local industry had been heavily lobbying for protection from imports for years. The industry filed an application with the National Tariff Commission (NTC) that finally came up with five-year anti-dumping levies on galvanized coils and cold rolled products last year, which was a win against Chinese dumping of cheap steel into the country.

    However, the existing regulatory duty of 15 percent on all other steel imports from all other countries was also raised to 30 percent.

    This essentially has allowed steel production to take off and steel prices to be comfortably stacked up by local players. In fact, Elixir Securities told in a note that Amreli Steel had raised steel bar prices by Rs3000 per ton to Rs98,000 per ton end of March. Per PBS, steel bar prices have gone up by 10 percent between March of this year and last. Subsequent price hikes are expected.

    Meanwhile, imported steel could become even more expensive. With China expected to cut down production of steel by 20 percent over the next few years, demand may outpace supply leading to steel prices climbing globally. On the other hand, Trump’s latest steel tariffs which essentially closed the US market for steel importing business may lead to a supply glut across the rest of the world.

    Some are fearing trade diversion which could pressure prices as well. Though here at home, measures like RDs are taken at a whim. Any major influx of cheaper steel into the country may result in an increase in that levy while remedial measures with the NTC can also be taken up, which are helpful if not expedient. Local players don’t seem very worried.

    Copyright Business Recorder, 2018

    Mohsin Munir

    No relief in federal budget for construction sector, says ABAD

    By Staff Report – April 28, 2018

    KARACHI: Association of Builders and Developers of Pakistan (ABAD) Chairman Arif Yousuf Jeewa has strongly rejected the Federal Budget 2018-19 announced by Federal Minister for Finance Miftah Ismail on Friday and alleged that the government wants to destroy a very important sector of the economy by totally ignoring the construction industry.

    In a strongly worded statement, ABAD chairman said that the government has presented a purely political and election budget, which will force the upcoming government to announce supplementary budget just after four months. He said that the construction sector is a very important sector for the betterment of national economy but the government even did not care to announce a clear construction policy, which will have a bad impact on the national economy in the long run as with the closure of construction industry more than 70 allied industries will all suffer badly creating mass unemployment.

    He lamented that regulatory duties (RD) on the import of steel bars, sanitary wares and tiles have not been withdrawn despite repeated requests by ABAD to the government that manufacturers of these materials are wrongly interpreting regulatory duties for their own interests by increasing rates on the pretext of the imposition of RD. Steel manufacturers, he continued, increased the rate of steel bars from Rs68,000 per tonne to Rs98,000 per tonne after imposition of the regulatory duty on it. Moreover, with the imposition of sales tax on electricity by Rs2.5 per unit from the government, steel bars are being sold at the rate of Rs102,000 per tonne. On the other hand, cement manufacturers have also raised Rs20 per bag of 50 kg cement despite the fact that the government had raised Rs13 per 50 kg bag of cement as excise duty.

    The cost of construction has increased due to immoral acts of such manufacturers, he said adding that at present Pakistan is facing a shortage of 12 million housing units and this shortage will increase manifold due to unjustifiable policies of the government as people from middle class also will not be able to purchase their dream houses.

    Arif Jeewa said that ABAD, prior to the budget, had proposed to the federal government to sit with provincial governments for doing away with three-tier property valuation and adopt a single property valuation system throughout the country and fix one per cent unified tax for the property transaction. Instead of providing relief to the construction sector, the government has put in abeyance the unified tax on property transaction by saying that provincial governments also should follow the federal government in this regard but has not taken concrete steps to implement it.

    He said that ABAD had given budget proposals to Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Finance Minister Miftah Ismail and other concerned authorities for the betterment of construction industry but no relief has been provided in the budget, which could be considered detrimental for the construction industry. ABAB had proposed that overseas Pakistanis be given leverage in the Tax Amnesty Scheme for construction or purchase of the first-ever home without asking the source of income but the government has not included this proposal into the budget, he added.

    ABAD chairman announced that ABAD will adopt a future course of action, in an emergency meeting, which is called for deliberation on issues raised regarding construction sector after the announcement of the federal budget.

    Cc: Pakistan today

    Mohsin Munir

    Bestway, DG Khan Cement companies escape harsh penalty

    By Monitoring Report – May 10, 2018

    KARACHI: The Supreme Court’s decision on Pakistan’s cement companies as a positive outcome, saying that contrary to market expectations, Bestway Cement Co and DG Khan Cement seemed to have escaped a harsher penalty.

    The comments come after the country’s top court ruled that Bestway Cement and DG Khan Cement will find an alternate source of water. The two companies also deposited Rs2 billion as the security deposit, and agreed to pay for the water they use from now on, reports a national daily.

    However, they have been given six months to find an alternate to Katas Raj pond that has nearly dried up due to heavy consumption by these companies.

    The market was expecting a penalty for the water these companies have already consumed last year, said an analyst.

    “The outcome is considered good for both companies,” said Sherman Securities analyst Saqib Hussain.

    Hussain said the companies have resolved to establish a reservoir, which will be fed through a water pipeline from Jhelum River, approximately 60km away. The establishment of the new system will help companies meet their water requirements without affecting Katas Raj pond in Chakwal.

    According to UBL Funds’ research analyst Anjali Rawlani, the companies must establish their alternate source of water in a six-month period.

    The installation of the pipeline is expected to cost around Rs2 to 2.5 billion while establishing a reservoir similar to Katas Raj pond size would cost around Rs100-150 million. The pond occupies an area of around 15,000 square feet with a maximum depth of 20 feet.

    Until the new target of establishing a reservoir is achieved, the companies would be paying Punjab government for the water they use.

    Last year in November, the Supreme Court took notice of the drying up of Katas Raj Temple pond due to the extraction of a large amount of groundwater by nearby cement factories through a number of wells, which resulted in declining water levels.

    Cement factories located in the vicinity of the pond are Bestway, DG Khan Cement, Gharibwal Cement and Dandot Cement. The first two fall in the red zone i.e. the area where cement factories are affecting the pond.

    The Punjab government is yet to decide the tariff rate for water usage until an alternative is available.

    Both DG Khan and Bestway will incur a one-time expense for six months. According to Hussain, if the companies are charged at Rs0.25 per liter as water conservancy charge as proposed by the Additional Advocate General Punjab in the court, then Bestway would have to pay Rs250 million, while DG Khan would be charged Rs175 million. This may reduce earnings for the two companies by a meagre 2% in FY19.

    Cc: Pakistan Today

    Mohsin Munir

    Rupee devaluation pushes steel prices to record highs

    By Monitoring Report – June 21, 2018

    KARACHI: As the rupee continues its downward slide against the dollar, steel manufacturers have raised the prices to Rs100,000 per ton, the first time the prices have surpassed this mark.

    Steel usage has been rising exponentially due to increased construction activity because of China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

    As per Taurus Securities research analyst Hamdan Altaf, the most used steel G40 and G60 cost surpassed the Rs100,000 mark for the first time, reported Express Tribune.

    Although, high-grade steel made on order could have sold above this price point before and the steel mentioned above was selling between Rs97,000-98,000 per ton.

    The input of steel production is contingent on imports of raw material which also is susceptible to the value of the greenback in Pakistan.

    Due to continuing depreciation of the rupee against the greenback in inter-bank and kerb market, the rise in steel prices was expected.

    Mr Altaf said due to massive demand from the construction sector, the price hike isn’t going to impact sales.

    Association of Builders and Development (ABAD) Senior Vice President Fayyaz Ilyas said demand would be unaffected, however, the lower-middle and middle-class segment would get hit.

    ABAD SVP shared prices of cost-sensitive economic housing projects would be hiked, greatly impacting lower-middle and middle-income groups.

    Mr Ilyas added aside from the rupee devaluation, the government had also enacted additional regulatory duties on import of raw material, which raised input prices in the construction sector.

    Pakistan’s steel industry comprises of a complete and a closely intertwined value chain – from pig iron furnaces to downstream sectors and end-user industries.

    Cc: Pakistan today

    Mohsin Munir

    Construction material prices witnessing a steady decline

    By Team Overc’s – March 23, 2019

    Lahore: Construction material prices are witnessing a decline which most of the experts believe is due to the limited construction activity throughout the country resulting in supply demand gap. Supply is more and demand is less currently due to various factors most prominent of which is a temporary pause on most of the mega construction/infrastructure projects.

    Cement prices whose MRP (Market retail price) crossed 600 Rs has now come down to 585 Rs per bag. Supply of cement increased due to another factor other than lesser construction activity after the recent conflict at Pakistan India LOC(line of control) that resulted in suspension of cross border trade. DG and Maple leaf are two companies whose cement is exported to Indian Punjab which has now come to a complete stop. Maple leaf MRP in Lahore region was at 605 Rs/bag in mid February 2019 which has now come down to Rs 592/bag. Similarly DG cement whose MRP in Lahore region was at 600 Rs/bag is now available at 585 Rs/bag. Bestway cement witnessed a decline from Rs 580/bag to Rs 562/bag. Islamabad region also witnessed decline in cement prices where bestway cement’s MRP came down from Rs 575/bag to Rs 545/bag as of March 2019.

    Steel prices that crossed 100,000 Rs/ton figure for Grade 60 first time in history of Pakistan also witnessed a slight decline and now available around Rs 97000 to Rs 98000 / ton. News are circulating in market that there might be a further decline in steel prices if construction activities in government sector projects do not return to normal.

    Bricks prices that witnessed an abnormal increase (Rs 12/brick) in Central and lower Punjab region due to closure of brick kilns, have returned to normal prices(Rs 9/brick).

    Mohsin Munir

    Cement prices continue to plunge downwards because of uncertain situation. No major infrastructure or construction projects are being executed both by the Federal as well as the Punjab government resulting in loss of construction material demand specially cement and steel. This has cause a serious drop in cement prices which had surpassed Rs 600/bag mark, now available at 555 Rs/bag in Lahore region. Best way cement in Islamabad region has witnessed a drop from 580 Rs/bag to 515 Rs/bag whereas DG/Maple leaf have witnessed drop from 560 Rs/bag to 500 Rs/bag. Similarly in Lahore region DG/Maple leaf witnessed a drop from 607 Rs/bag to 555 Rs/bag as of 16th April 2019 and bestway cement dropped down from Rs 585/bag to 532 Rs/bag

    Mohsin Munir


    Cement prices continue to plunge downwards because of uncertain situation. No major infrastructure or construction projects are being executed both by the Federal as well as the Punjab government resulting in loss of construction material demand specially cement and steel. This has cause a serious drop in cement prices which had surpassed Rs 600/bag mark, now available at 500 Rs/bag in Lahore region. Best way cement in Islamabad region has witnessed a drop from 580 Rs/bag to 495 Rs/bag whereas DG/Maple leaf have witnessed drop from 560 Rs/bag to 485 Rs/bag. Similarly in Lahore region DG/Maple leaf witnessed a drop from 607 Rs/bag to 500 Rs/bag as of 9th May 2019 and bestway cement dropped down from Rs 585/bag to 480 Rs/bag

    Mohsin Munir


    Cement prices witnessed upward trend finally after a long downward trend have now reached almost close to original values that were before that downhill. No major infrastructure or construction projects are being executed both by the Federal as well as the Punjab government resulting in loss of construction material demand specially cement and steel however still cement prices are going up specially after the budget 2019-2020 announced by the current ruling government in which a tax of 25 Rs/bag has been proposed on cement. Furthermore NHA (national highway authority) has started a crackdown against carriage transporters for carrying more than permissible load on the heavy vehicles/loaders(Maximum 38 tons allowed from cement carriage transporters) which will further impact and cement prices will go up.
    This has resulted in increase of cement prices which had come down to Rs 430/bag mark, now available at 540 Rs/bag in Lahore region. Best way cement in Islamabad region has witnessed an increase from 440 Rs/bag to 520 Rs/bag whereas DG/Maple leaf have witnessed increase from 430 Rs/bag to 510 Rs/bag. Similarly in Lahore region DG/Maple leaf witnessed increase from 450 Rs/bag to 550 Rs/bag as of 18th June 2019 and bestway cement increased from Rs 430/bag to 540 Rs/bag

    Mohsin Munir

    Steel prices INCREASED

    So after cement, it is now steel prices which have witnessed sharp increase within days. From 102 Rs/kg in mid of June 2019, prices have jumped to almost 115 Rs/kg by the end of June 2019. Reason only being the devaluation of Pakistani Rupee against the dollar. 80-85% raw material used in making of rebar/steel is imported, import duties and increase in dollar price has made it difficult as a result of which mill owners have increased per kg prices of steel.

    Mohsin Munir

    Cement prices INCREASED

    A day after the yearly budget 2019-2020 was passed by the National assembly, cement prices have been increased due to the tax imposed by the government at the rate of 25 Rs/bag, taking the price of Maple leaf cement to 635 Rs as of 1st July 2019 in Lahore region whereas Bestway cement bag price has gone up to 610 Rs. Islamabad region witnessed similar increase in Price of cement which is now available in the range of 600-620 Rs/bag.

    Mohsin Munir

    JULY 4th UPDATE:


    Reports are coming that artificial shortage has been created in the market and in some rural areas cement bag is being sold in black in 750+ Rs/bag.

    Mohsin Munir

    uPVC prices increased by 7%

    By Team Overc’s – July 11, 2019

    As per the uPVC pipes dealers in the market, manufacturer companies have raised the prices of all sizes in UPVC pipes by 7%. Prices of other constructin materials required during grey structure and finishing works are already witnessing an upward trend. Though most of the UPVC pipes are manufactured locally in Pakistan however after approval of budget 2019-2020, various taxes and duties were increased on importing raw material required for making of UPVC pipes resulting in overall increase in rates. Increase in electricity unit and gas unit has also resulted in increase of uPVC pipes prices. Similar trend might be seen in coming days for PPRC pipes too.

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