Move to raise cement prices in Bahrain rapped
Manama, January 3, 2011
Moves to increase the price of cement by up to 30 per cent in Bahrain have been rejected.
'The sharp increase in the price of cement, all of a sudden, is not justified by any objective or logical reasons,' Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry said.
It also called on authorities, particularly the Industry and Commerce Ministry, to take measures against any rise due to 'a cartel'.
'The ministry has every right to prohibit such an unjustified increase,' according to a Chamber statement.
It slammed the agreement reached between cement companies, describing the deal as 'an irresponsible collusion and utter monopoly which must be met with silence'.
The Chamber strongly rejected any unilateral moves undermining the free market fundamentals.
'Prices must be regulated through demand supply, rather that connivance and monopoly,' it said.
It also warned against the detrimental impact of increasing the price of cement on the competitiveness of Bahrain construction market.
'Such an arbitrative move will cause a sharp increase in the prices of other construction materials.'
According to the Chamber, any sharp increase in the price of cement would paralyse projects which are now under construction.
It also warned against the repercussions of the move as Bahrain is preparing to embark on massive housing and urban projects.-TradeArabia News Service