According to them, unchecked prices will result in a huge burden to the buyers.
Across the country, steel prices had gone up by Rs 20,000 per tonne over the last year. And last week, the prices had again gone up by Rs 6,000 per tonne, the media reports said.
In this background, the South Indian Cement Manufacturers Association said that cement prices in the country are to be increased considerably. It cited multiple reasons such as the unavailability of pet coke and the uncontrolled increase in the price of imported coal which resulted in the hike.
Overall, the estimated increase in production cost will be a minimum of Rs 60 per bag.
According to Krishna Srivasthava, general secretary, South Indian Cement Manufacturers Association, the last few months have witnessed an unprecedented increase in the cost of imported coal and the substitute pet coke. Availability of pet coke has also come down.
“Shortage of vessels, high-priced coal and the unavailability of pet coke resulted in a further increase in the price of cement. Under these circumstances it is expected that cement production may be badly hit”, Srivasthava said.
Srivashava, who is also the director of Penna Cement, pointed out that a further rise in fuel prices will make things worse and it will be more difficult to forecast regarding production volumes and capacity utilization.
On the other hand, the builders in Kochi are quite disturbed by the rising input costs and its impact on the stressed real estate market of Kerala.
Credai-Kochi president, Ravi Jacob said that the price hike of steel and cement will force the construction industry to increase Rs 1,000 per sq ft for buildings which will adversely affect the customers.
“The price hike will lead to the construction sector plunging into deep crisis. After the Covid crisis, the construction industry was slowly recovering and the present price hike will result in a total standstill. The price hike will be an additional burden to the customers. The policy of the government to provide affordable houses will have a negative impact with the price hike in construction materials,” he added.