Displaying items by tag: Duty
Zimbabwe: PPC Zimbabwe’s managing director Kelibone Masiyane has said that duty on cement imports has done little to discourage the market. The government introduced a 25% duty on every 100t of imported cement in 2016, according to the NewsDay newspaper. He singled out imports from Zambia as well as those from South Africa, Mozambique and Botswana.
“In addition to liquidity challenges, we continued to face pressure from cheap imports. Government has tried to assist by introducing duty on imported cement, but the reality on the ground is that imports continue to pour in, particularly from Zambia,” said Masiyane. Despite this he added that PPC Zimbabwe was confident that the local economy would pick up in 2017 supported by infrastructure projects.
The Cement and Concrete Institute of Zimbabwe lobbied the Ministry of Industry and Commerce to ban imported cement in 2016. In a paper it suggested including a protection tariff to equate the landed price of imported cement to the cost of the local product, granting of import licences to local producers, cancelling or reviewing all issued permits that are circulating in the country and lowering duty on raw materials.
Uganda: Excise duty on cement is set to be doubled in the 2016 – 2017 budget as part of a set of measures designed to increase government expenditure. The excise duty charged on a 50kg bag of cement is to be raised to US$0.29 from US$0.15. Industry commentators in local press have warned that this could raise market prices, depress consumer demand and discourage new investments. Other commodities affected by the increased duties include petrol and vehicle lubricants.
“Cement is a very price sensitive product among retail buyers and the proposed tax increase could suffocate demand patterns. This situation has partly resulted in relatively small margins of about $0.05 earned per bag among local dealers. I feel the excise duty rate on cement should have been kept stable to allow producers and agents to remain afloat under difficult economic conditions,” said Joseph Kitone, a hardware dealer quoted by the East African newspaper.
Pakistan: The Ministry of Commerce has initiated World Trade Organisation (WTO) dispute settlement proceedings to fight South African anti-dumping duties on cement from Pakistan. The basis of Pakistan's argument is that the injury determination mechanism followed by South African authorities (ITAC) is flawed and does not reflect true analysis of the situation.
The Pakistan challenge has raised the issue that the South African authorities used an extended period of investigation of four years for causation analysis and didn't properly examine the evidence in the light of trends over that period. In addition, Pakistan considers that South Africa failed to examine the relationship between the alleged dumping and the worsening of the condition of the domestic industry especially by failing to consider the effects of the decartelization of the domestic cement producers. It also accuses South Africa of not properly examining the entire product under investigation and instead limiting its injury analysis to bagged cement and disregarded sales by the domestic industry of the bulk cement. Finally, the challenge has pointed out that the South African authorities didn't provide a fair opportunity to Pakistani cement exporters to defend their case, denying access to the trade statistics.
In May 2015 South Africa imposed various rates of duties on Pakistani cement exports ranging from 15 – 68% plus anti-dumping duty on the import of Pakistani cement. Since March 2015 Pakistan has been pursuing the matter on a legal and diplomatic basis.
Pakistan: Cement exports from Pakistan fell by 36% year-on-year to 467,000t in September 2015, as the import duty by South Africa took a heavy toll on its exports.
"Around 45 – 50% of total cement exports were destined for South Africa before the duty was imposed," said Sheikh Adeel, Senior Manager of Sales and Marketing at Maple Leaf Cement. South Africa has imposed duty as high as 77% on Pakistan's cements. Adeel said that the drop in exports has adversely affected exporters in Punjab. The transportation cost from Punjab to Karachi Port also rose by US$20/t.
Another industry official said that the industry is not utilising its production capacity. "There is enough idle capacity. The government should step in to support the industry to export surplus volumes, otherwise cement exports will continue to decline in the coming months," said Shahzad Ahmed, a spokesman of the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association (APCMA). "We expect the government to announce export incentives for the cement industry."
In September 2014, cement exports stood at 730,000t, according to APCMA data. Total cement dispatches were recorded at 2.95Mt in September 2015 compared to 3.15Mt in September 2014, showing a cut of 6.34%. The industry data showed that cement dispatches to domestic markets were 2.48Mt in September 2015 compared to 2.42Mt in September 2014, up by 2.6%.
The local industry has been demanding that the government curb cement imports from Iran, which they said is eating into local share. "The industry expects the government to take effective steps to stop the penetration of Iranian cement in Pakistani markets through massive under invoicing and/or mis-declaration," said Ahmed. He added that the mills in the south suffered more than those operating in northern part of the country.
In the south, domestic cement dispatches declined to 399,581t in September 2015 from 431,133t in September 2014. Domestic consumption in the north, however, rose to 2.08Mt in September 2015 from 1.99Mt in September 2014. Ahmed said that domestic dispatches in the north were nominally higher than the 2.02Mt of consumption in September 2015. "This shows that the pace of construction in the north has not been hit as badly as in the south," he said. The export decline was almost the same both in north and south. Cement exports from the north declined to 306,564t in September 2015 from 480,025t in September 2014. Exports from the south dipped to 160,698t in September 2015 from 249,906t in September 2014.
Ghana: According to local media Modern Ghana, George Dawson-Ahmoah, chairman of the Ghana Cement Manufacturers Association (GCMA), has called for the imposition of anti-dumping duties on imported cement to rid the industry of unfair trade practices by importers and protect investments by local cement manufacturers and the employment of locals.
Dawson-Ahmoah urged the government to take its cue from South Africa, which recently imposed provisional anti-dumping duties on cement originating from Pakistan. South Africa imposed provisional anti-dumping duties on cement from Pakistan from 15 May 2015 following investigations initiated by the International Trade Administration Commission of South Africa (ITAC) on 22 August 2014 after a number of local cement producing companies submitted an application on behalf of the industry.
Dumping occurs when companies export their goods to foreign markets at prices lower than what they charge for the same product in their home market. When dumping causes material injury to an industry in the market to which the products are exported, it is considered unfair trade.
Dawson-Ahmoah said that since countries are entitled to act in terms of World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules and procedures with an objective to level the playing field between domestic producers and foreign competitors, Ghana's government should act appropriately to defend the local market from undue price under cuttings, which have the potential to 'destabilise' the industry.
South Africa: South Africa has imposed provisional anti-dumping duties of 14.3 – 77.2% on Portland Cement originating in or imported from Pakistan from 15 May 2015 for six months. Lucky Cement is subjected to pay 14.3% duty, followed by Bestway at 77.2%, DG Khan at 68.9%, Attock Pakistan at 63.5% and other cement makers at 62.7%.
This follows an investigation initiated by the International Trade Administration Commission of South Africa (ITAC) on 22 August 2014 after a number of local cement producing companies submitted an application on behalf of the South African Customs Union (SACU). A number of companies, including Afrisam, Lafarge Africa, NPC Cimpor and PPC, approached the ITAC and established a prima facie case that convinced the commission to initiate an investigation on the basis of dumping, material injury, threat of material injury and causality. However, the application was opposed by Pakistani cement producers, such as Lucky Cement, Bestway Cement, DG Khan Cement and Attock Cement.
The commission found that the industry is suffering material injury through a decline in sales volume and output as well as profits and cash flow. The industry also experienced price undercutting and price suppression. The commission further found that a threat of material injury exists given that Pakistan has increased its production capacity; Pakistan's exports to its traditional markets are declining and imports from Pakistan into South Africa increased by >600% in 2010 - 2013.
The commission made a preliminary determination that Portland cement originating in or imported from Pakistan was dumped into the market. In order to prevent further injury to the industry while the investigation is under way, the commission has requested the SARS (South African Revenue Service) to impose the provisional measures on imported Portland cement originating from Pakistan for six months.