ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s LanwaSanstha Cement Corporation (Pvt) ltd, had inked a deal with China-run Hambantota International Port Group (Pvt) Ltd, to set up two ship unloaders and a covered conveyor belt at the Southern port, the two companies said.
HIPG had licensed LanwaSansthaCement to operate two ship unloaders owned by Lanwa in the jetty area allocated to it at the Hambantota Port.
The 2.4 kilometre covered conveyor belt will be take raw material from port to a grinding plant in the nearby Mirijjawila industrial zone.
The dust free, overhead enclosed conveyor belt could transport 1,200 tons per hour. A 60,000 tonne ship could be unloaded within three days with the facility.
Lanwa Santha is has a capacity of 3 million metric tonnes per annum.
“This plant is the first of its kind in Sri Lanka utilizing cutting-edge European technology to yield optimum outcomes while being environmentally conscious through continuous monitoring.,” Chairman of LanwaSanstha Cement Nandana Lokuwithana said in a statement.
“Also, we hope that this would be a positive inception for the benefit of the construction industry of our motherland.”
Ceylon Steel Corporation Limited, makes QT bars, hot dipped galvanized pipes (GI pipes), box bars, round tubes, wire nails, MS rods, purlins and meshes under the ‘Lanwa’ brand.
Lanwa group now produces steel under heavy import protection.
The price gouging and rent seeking through import protection has been blamed for excessive construction costs that makes tourism other services uncompetitive compared to East Asia and other regions.
Protectionist steel has also made it expensive for young homeless couples to put a roof over their heads and may also lead to scrimping on steel which will lead to building collapses, critics have warned.
At the moment cement is made in Sri Lanka by firms with foreign connections who have had limited success in lobbying politicians for protection. For years they have been hit by price controls.
However price controls on cement were recently lifted amid shortages and it is not clear whether import protection will come.
LanwaSanstha Cement is targeting major construction projects locally including Port City and expressways once commissioned.
It will produced blended cement, Ordinary Portland Cement (OPC), Portland Slag Cement (PSC), Portland Limestone Cement (PLC) and Blended Hydraulic Cement (BHC). (Colombo/Nov1/2021)