Cement consumption is the barometer of our economy. When cement demand had shown signs of recovery in January and February after relatively dull 2019, economists had started believing that the economy was on recovery path. Then came COVID-19 and subsequent lockdown changing all our calculations upside down. The industry was in standstill mode for nearly a month with no production and no sales. After reopening too recovery is slower and everyone is expecting demand sustained recovery only in the second half of the financial year.
Lockdown will have impact on the industry, both in short term as well as long term. In the short term, we are seeing demand disruption and in the long term in terms of capacity addition as most of the cement manufacturers who had announced capacity addition plans (both Greenfield and Brownfield) have decided to go slow on their plans till clarity emerges on market condition. This may have some impact on the prospects in the medium to long term.
Nevertheless, the industry has overcome several hurdles in the past and this will also pass without much upheaval.
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