Egypt: Local cement production expected to reach 90.4m tonnes by 2022


Updated Fri, 13 Nov 2015 10:42:47 GMT

The government plans to offer new licences for the production of cement to meet the future needs of the local market, which is expected to reach 90.4m tonnes by 2022, according to Minister of Industry and Foreign Trade Tarek Qabil.

Speaking at the 20th International Exhibition and Conference of the cement industry and building materials in Cairo Tuesday, organised by the Arab Union for Cement and Building Materials (AUCBM), Qabil said Egypt has a strong basis in the cement industry through 23 producing companies.

They produce an estimated 60m tonnes of cement per year, a material that is considered a vital component in the construction activities in the region.

The minister added that the government is working on developing and easing investment procedures in the industrial sector to attract more investments and take advantage of trade agreements that Egypt signed with the European Union (EU), Arab countries, the COMESA and the EFTA States, Turkey and the Mercosur countries.

“Through making use of these agreements, the Arab companies can export to Europe, Latin American markets, Arab and African countries,” said Qabil. “The government was able to provide the needed energy to operate the factories at the beginning of November, as the sector suffered for four years from a lack of gas for operation.”

Qabil added that the government permitted the use of coal for electricity generation with the development of the necessary environmental safeguards. He highlighted the efforts of the ministry of industry to overcome the challenges facing investors, including availability of industrial lands, simplification of procedures for lands allocation, extraction of operation licenses and development of an export subsidy programme with priority given to sectors that have competitive advantages.

The minister called on Arab countries to promote economic initiatives and trade cooperation, to enable the private sector to play a greater role in the development process, and to create appropriate and conducive environments for businesses to grow and prosper during the next phase.