Global demand for cement will fall this year for the first time in 25 years, according to Lafarge’s chief executive.
Bruno Lafont, Lafarge SA chairman and chief executive expects cement consumption worldwide to drop by around 3% this year as the economic downturn continues to hit the construction markets globally.
Lafont also said that this element doesn’t take into account any stimulus packages that countries might implement “not because they will not have an influence on cement demand as they all have an infrastructure component, but because we do not know when they will start to take effect.”
Global demand for cement had been growing at 5% annually for the past 25 years until 2007.
The Lafarge group, which operates in around 80 countries, saw operating profit grow 2.2% growth in to 3.36 billion euros for the year ended Dec 31, 2008 sales rose 8% to 19.03 billion euros.