- To add 3mn MT to Sri Lanka’s cement output
- On par with capacity of country’s second largest cement producer
- Commissioning delayed by 2 months due to COVID-19
- To cater exclusively to local market
- Sri Lanka’s cement demand widely expected to rebound this year
By Nishel Fernando
LanwaSanstha Cement Corporation Limited expects to commission the operations of its US $ 75 million state-of-the-art cement manufacturing cement plant in May this year, adding three million metric tonnes (MT) to Sri Lanka’s cement output.
The facility, located in the Mirijjawila Export Processing Zone in Hambantota, spreads across 63 acres. “Initially, we planned to commission the plant in March. However, it is now delayed to May, as the COVID-19 pandemic stalled the progress. Around 95 percent of civil construction is completed and currently installations are going on by doubling up the team,” LanwaSanstha Cement Executive Director Dammika Lokuwithana told Mirror Business.
He noted that the plant would have a three million MT capacity, similar to the current capacity of the county’s second largest cement manufacturer, INCEE Cement.
The project is expected to cater exclusively to the local market.
Lokuwithana emphasised that the plant would operate on environmentally friendly technology and systems.
The company has procured the latest German-made Gebr Pfeiffer machinery for mixing while most of the other equipment used throughout the production process has been customised by the world-renowned pioneer in innovation, Siemens. Further, FLSmidth’s state-of-the-art technology will be utilised for improved efficiency and minimal wastage.
According to a report by Asia Securities, LanwaSanstha is projected to account for 20.3 percent of the country’s cement output by next year, just behind the projected market shares of Tokyo Cement (29 percent) and INSEE Cement (26.4 percent).
Despite an overall contraction in Sri Lanka’s cement market, the domestic cement production rose by 10.6 percent year-on-year (YoY) to 366,000 MT in the 10 months of last year. However, the imported cement fell by over 33 percent YoY to 223,000 MT.
Sri Lanka’s cement demand is widely expected to rebound this year.
In June, last year, the government increased the cess levy on several imported cement types to limit foreign exchange outflows, with a goal to encourage domestic production.
LanwaSanstha Cement Corporation Ltd is owned by UAE-based Onyx Group and Ceylon Steel Corporation-fame entrepreneur Nandana Lokuwithana.