No cement price hike in S’wak – Abdul Karim
BINTULU: The price of cement in Sarawak will stay put. Assistant Minister of Housing Abdul Karim Hamzah gave this assurance at the Sheda Home and Property Roadshow here on Saturday.
He said reports in national dailies that the price of cement could go up by RM1 per 50 kg bag and RM20 per metric tonne was applicable only to the peninsula, and not in Sarawak.
“This (price hike) is not true, and is not happening in Sarawak. We won’t worsen the current situation by increasing the price of cement,” Abdul Karim said.
Meanwhile, CMS Cement Sdn Bhd, Sarawak’s sole cement producer and manufacturer, also gave an assurance that they would not be raising the price of cement as they respected the Malaysian Competition Act.
It added that they would not engage in price discussions with any Malaysian cement producers.
Cahya Mata Sarawak Berhad group managing director Datuk Richard Curtis said CMS Cement had always remained committed to the socio-economic wellbeing of the state.
“Even though cement production in Sarawak poses a logistical challenge due to terrain, raw materials and geographical population spread, we will not be increasing our prices.
“While the perception is that Sarawak is a cement monopoly, in truth any person can set up operations just as CMS Cement does, import cement to cover unexpected demand surges or disruptions to its own production,” said Curtis in a statement.
He added despite the logistical challenges that might have deterred other cement producers, CMS Cement would continue to play their part to support the state’s development.
“In 2011, similar baseless price hike rumours were reported, and we reiterate today exactly the same points we had made at that time as our position and stance on the matter has not changed.”
He added that as a responsible corporation, CMS Cement was fully aware that the local market depended on them to ensure reliable supply of quality cement for its infrastructure needs.
“This is especially important now as SCORE’s potential is being realised.
“We always consider the impacts that our actions have on the construction sector, and, therefore, our preference is not to pass on the increased costs of doing business to the customers.”