It’s been an interesting month for the cement industry in Oman

After a recent report predicted a steady growth in the cement industry in Oman and the announcement of various producer projects, there has been a lot of developments in the cement industry in the country.

Al Maha Financial Services concluded in a sector report from late August 2016 that the production capacity of the two main Oman cement producers, Oman Cement and Raysut Cement, has been pushed by government-backed infrastructure projects. The good news from the report were accompanied however with fears that prices in Oman would continue to lower because of the excess production capacity of producers in neighbouring countries.

According to Global Cement Directory the current cement production capacity in Oman is 8.81Mt/yr. In the local market the leading producers Oman Cement and Raysut Cement each hold respectfully 4.2Mt/yr with a plant at Rusayl and 3Mt/yr with a plant at Salalah.

Throughout 2016 Raysut Cement has demonstrated progress on multiple local projects including the launch of a new 20,000t silo at Salalah in May 2016, building a new terminal at the Port of Duqm due to open by the end of the third quarter of 2016, installing a new 150t/hr rotary packing plant with auto truck loader for expected commissioning by the end of October 2016 and it is currently upgrading its gas supply station at Salalah, also to give cement production a boost.

This last project is of specific interest because when Global Cement paid a visit Oman Cement the staff at the Rusayl plant expressed concerns about the quickly rising price of natural gas. The plant used gas as its primary fuel and back at January 2015 they were considering diversifying into alternative fuels such as tires or using local coal instead. The issue was also mentioned in the company’s first quarter report, where it attributed the rise in gas prices to a 26.8% hit in its operational profit taking it down to US$15.6m in the first quarter of 2015.

In the meantime, Raysut Cement and Oman Cement are both in the course of constructing a cement plant together at Al Duqm. The latest news on their joint venture appeared in mid-August 2016 when the two companies have announced that they had registered Al Wusta Cement as the company selected to carry out the project. So far the plant is at the feasibility study stage with further progress to be released at a later date.

Article source: Global Cement News

Image Source: Construction Week Online