Rain dampens PPC cement sales for January and February
Cement producer PPC said on Monday that adverse weather had negatively affected cement and concrete sales in South Africa during January and February 2017.
PPC was providing an operational update which reflected that rainfall in excess of 200 mm was experienced in many parts of the country during these two months.
The leading supplier of cement in southern Africa said it managed to reduce net debt further to R4.4-billion as at December 2016 due to the conclusion of a component of the first empower-ment transaction.
The improved balance sheet would mitigate the adverse impact of the cyclical nature of the business, and that business continued to generate superior cash earnings despite capital expenditure requirements.
PPC said retail selling prices in most African countries had been declining on the back of increased cement capacity as well as lower economic growth.
The prevailing price of cement at retail stores has declined by about 28% in the DRC on the back of an influx of imports and the entry of a new producer in the local market.
PPC said pricing in the DRC is expected to normalise once government’s cement import ban is reinstated.
The lower realisable retail selling prices of cement imply lower factory gate prices which will put pressure on margins in these territories.