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Santo Domingo.- The jump as high as 30 pesos on  the price for a bag of cement stems from the control which one of the six manufacturers has over the association which groups them, Dominican Chamber of Construction (Cadocon ) president Diego de Moya affirmed Thursday.

"The company Cemex controls the Dominican Cement Producers Association (Adocem) and therefore applies price increases wherever and whenever it pleases without control," the business leader said.

"I tell it like it is. And that’s basically an association managed by Cemex and it’s doing what Cemex wants here. That's a disaster, because without control and every time they want, increases cement in Dominican Republic, led by Cemex," the annoyed executive said.

De Moya’s affirmation comes one day after Housing Builders and Developers Association (ACOPROVI) president Femin Acosta called "suspicious that the bag of cement rose around 10% to welcome the administration which takes office August 16."

Hardware Dealers Association president Domingo Diaz also agrees with those who’ve complained of higher cement cost. "It’s certainly a rise which won’t sit well with the next government just starting, and manufacturers, instead of promoting this disproportionate increase, they’ve should’ve conducted an analysis (to realize) that it isn’t consistent with the country’s current reality."

Newspaper El Caribe reports that prices varied yesterday among companies in the in the industry, from 320 to 330 pesos per bag, jumping from RD$295 just a few days ago.

But Adocem executive director Julissa Baez justifies the increase, calling it an adjustment of cement prices from earlier this year, adding that it’s a decision by each manufacturer, and doesn’t  involve the Association, which in addition to Cemex, groups Cementos Colon, Domicem, Cementos Cibao, Cementos Andino and Cemento Santo Domingo.

It’s the coke, not the crude

In a statement, Adocem noted that though the price of oil has dropped, the fuel for cement furnaces, called coke, has jumped from  US$40.0 the ton earlier this year to US$140.0 today.

"I don’t want to comment on the rise in fuel Adocem says they use. If that’s so I’ll admit they’re right, but I don’t believe Cemex much, because they increase prices often," de Moya said.

Cemex denies “manipulation”

Cemex called the allegation it manipulates cement prices unfounded and affirms that its actions comply strictly with the law.

It said its more than 17 years in the country, and over one century globally is proof of that, which has led it to become the local market’s leader and among the world’s top producers.

"Cemex recognizes and supports the Government’s right to promote free competition and open markets, through full and strict enforcement of antitrust laws. For these reasons it categorically rejects public statements voiced in that regard."

In a statement to DT, the Mexico based company said Dominican Republic’s is a competitive market where prices are set by the dynamics of supply and demand, and a local cement industry with the largest number of competitors and at 6.2 million tons per year, the hemisphere’s highest installed capacity per capita. “In the last three years the behavior of the company’s cement prices have been kept relatively stable, with an annual average growth similar to inflation.”

“Finally, it’s Cemex’s wish that the statements made on the issue at hand be characterized by the seriousness and respect it merits, to avoid confusions with possible problems among individuals.”

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9 comment(s)
Written by: josearias, 21 Jul 2012 11:16 AM
From: United States
This is what happens when the goberment , any goberment in any given time star selling key land marks of a country economics to a foreigners business.... And some of born Dominican are guilty for not being leaders , AILA , CEME'S. CLARO, all this belong to Mexican. Investment and then you got the canidian,s investment taking all the minerals there is a huge reason they paid 2 billion dollars for the wright to mine in DR... Just to name afew
Written by: josearias, 21 Jul 2012 11:33 AM
From: United States
To Dominican bisiness it doesn't matter how much money you can have or can produce , what's really matter is a place that you can live and be happy of your soraundings and family that country is DR any of you want to live in USA / euro / or any other country go ahead , remember one thing you are not living in DR any more and you decited to run instead of bean a Dominican bisiness leader....
Written by: anthonyC, 21 Jul 2012 5:33 PM
From: United States
"applies price increases wherever and whenever it pleases without control,"


You have a problem with Freedom?
Written by: josean This user is banned, 22 Jul 2012 9:57 AM
From: United States, Guillermo President 2016 Because Our Future Depends On It!

I call for a National Day WITHOUT Chicken and Cement!

Written by: MrThelmoAlmeydaRancier, 22 Jul 2012 12:23 PM
From: United States, NJ
Yes they have a problem, when the same size bag of cement could be imported from the USA or Jamaica for 1/2 the price,being they all belong to the free import duty agreement. If we are talking
about competitiveness.

Anthony C :
If you wanty to call that" freedom"then let the consumers import from whoever is more economical for them, instead of putting a barrier on the Jamaican cement entry into the country !
Written by: anthonyC, 22 Jul 2012 5:05 PM
From: United States

There is nobody here who has called for a free market in the D.R.than me.

The best thing for the D.R. to do is to tell Adocem to get lost and to remove all trade barriers on construction materials.

The only reason that imported Cement is cheaper than domestic is because of gross negligence and inefficiency of the Dominican Cement Industry.
Written by: MrThelmoAlmeydaRancier, 25 Jul 2012 7:45 AM
From: United States, NJ
Anthony C:

I thought it was a Mexican based co? where does DR incompetence producers comes into the picture ? DR belongs to DR/CAFTA, therefore no restriction should apply to imported manufacture
goods within the same free trade group, as long as they are competitive,for the benefit of the consumers.
Written by: josearias, 25 Jul 2012 4:30 PM
From: United States
This Mexican investment in DR are a huge way to laundering. Money , there is a reason they didn't. Allow any import of cement. And that is corruption ... ......, DR low makers are pretty good writhing it but do they comply .

DR/USA. They have a free tray agreement but still A used car/ suv are amazingly expensive.

DR/CAFTA only on paper for the bisness that don't. Produce olmost no corruption money,
Written by: MrThelmoAlmeydaRancier, 25 Jul 2012 5:55 PM
From: United States, NJ

Very true ,what good are writing up laws with out reinforing them? I had mentioned Jamaican

cement since I think they are part of DR/CAFTA. Still if the cement could be adquiered cheaper

some where else then it is good for the consumers,providing it is with in in the same group of

trade agreement nations therefore no tariffs should be imposed.

I was talking to a DR mechanic who wanted to sell me his suv ,he claims in a year he will not be

elegible to bring it in the DR w/o having to pay huge amount of tariffs as if it were brand new.

I can see by the article all the huge investments from Mexico in DR ,when it all could be done in

Mexico who is in dyre need of industry for its people, You might have a good point there as to

where is all that investment money coming from. My best guess is as good as yours ......
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