Iran: Cement production remained stagnant at 54.5Mt during the Iranian financial year that ended on 20 March 2018. Clinker production was reported as 57.9Mt, according to ISNA. The country produced 54.1Mt of cement in the preceding financial year. The lack of growth has been blamed on a recession in the construction sector, poor supply of gas to industrial users and declines in the export market.
Exports fell by 9% year-on-year to 5.8Mt in the 2018 period, according to Abdolreza Sheikhan, the secretary of Iran's Cement Industry Employers Association, with particular declines noted in Iraq and Afghanistan. Iraq temporarily banned imports from Iran in 2015 due to low quality but volumes fell following the resumption of trade. Cement shipments to Russia have also reportedly been returned due to quality issues. An arrangement with the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines to implement a 30% discount for cement cargos to Persian Gulf states has been agreed but it is yet to be implemented.