19 May 2006
By Isabelle Francis
"On the marketing side, we would also launch new products over the next few months and years," he said.
Crouy added that the company and other industry players have been in talks with the government to revise the ceiling price of cement of RM198 per tonne (government-controlled price) now.
"Our cost (of production) have increased by 30% in the past 11 years, and we would like (price increase) to be as close as that. But we are not sure that (price) would be feasible to the government.
"Increase in price is to compensate for the (operation's) cost increase which accelerated in the last three years, particularly with regards to fuel," he said.
"This year, we expect the market to be above last year's. We should be able to control cost better as we don't have the impact of the coal increase, and at the same time with our internal operations efficiency."
However, he believed the infrastructure spending would not impact its business significantly this year, despite the hefty allocation to the construction sector under the Ninth Malaysian plan (9MP).
He said the impact of the 9MP would only be seen from the second half of the year onwards.
Crouy said the company also expects better contribution from its overseas operations, particularly in Vietnam and Singapore.