MARGAO: Even as sale of cement is experiencing a low due to a slump in the construction industry, the prices of cement have suddenly shot up for no reason or rhyme putting retail cement vendors in hardship and cement dealers are not willing to disclose the reason for the hike.
Cement bags that were costing around Rs 320 to Rs 340 till Thursday have now suddenly been priced between Rs 340 and Rs 365 causing a lot of distress to retailers who are now witnessing no sales at all.
Aditya Naik of Bharati Cement said the prices have increased because cement was priced low and the companies were not even recovering their production and delivery cost. “We are transporting our cement from a distance of around 700 kms and the transportation cost made it impossible to sell cement at a lower rate,” he said.
Incidentally, there are around 16 companies marketing cement in Goa and all of them have jointly decided to increase the price of cement. Sreekanth Vijayan of ACC Cement and Nirmesh Tyagi of Zuari Cement refused to comment on the matter and while Sreekanth suggested to contact their office in Bangalore Nirmesh said to contact the Goa in-charge who could not be contacted.
While the cement companies are not divulging the reason for the hike in prices, it is learnt that the hike is because they expect the GST for cement to be reduced shortly and they do not wish to transfer the reduction to the consumer.
Apparently the present hike will be reduced once the GST is reduced so that people will continue to pay the same price that was available two days back.
and thus while the cement companies will make the profits the poor consumer will pay dearly.