North Africa’s cement industry facing ­great challenges

Summary: The cement industry in North Africa is being considerably affected by the current political upheavals in the region. However, in Tunisia at least the expected slump in cement sales did not yet occur in the first quarter of 2011. In Egypt, plant stoppages caused a loss of about two production weeks. In Libya, production has come to a total standstill since the beginning of the civil war. The situation in Morocco and Algeria is also regarded as tense. The coming months will be marked by hope and fear and the cement industry naturally wants the situation to return to normality as quickly as possible. The following report deals with the situation of the cement industry in the North African countries and describes the prospects up to the year 2012.

1 Introduction

Historical changes generally occur infrequently. It is therefore really remarkable that such an upheaval is currently taking place in a part of the world where the political and social situation had up to now been regarded as relatively stable. Triggered by protest movements in Tunisia, an entire region has been gripped by demands for more democracy, freedom and economic reforms. In Tunisia and Egypt the long-established governments were swept away by the peoples’ protests. Heads of state, like Egypt’s President Mubarak, who had previously been courted by western nations, are now...

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