• BPO, real estate fueling cement industry growth

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    The cement industry sees infrastructure projects related to business process outsourcing (BPO) and properties development fueling the industry’s growth.

    “We have growing markets in Visayas like Iloilo, Bacol . . . [and these areas]have a call center already. So usually, when there’s BPO, all the developments are there. We have to make sure that we have warehouses there, regular shipments that go in the area,” Roberto Javier, national sales director of Cemex Philippines, said.

    “And in Eastern Visayas, housing is one of the areas that they are trying to catch up with. In the case of Western Visayas, it’s buildings and road networks,” Javier added.

    He also said that Mindanao, particularly Davao and Cagayan de Oro, are developing infrastructures gradually.

    Paul Arsenas, strategic planning vice president of Cemex Philippines, said that building a big number infrastructure may get criticisms, but he said that is necessary for the country’s development.

    “Sometimes iniisip natin na overbuilt na tayo, andami na, lahat na ng bagay sinesemento. Yes, agree but for productive uses, malayo pa tayo sa ibang bansa [Sometimes we think that we overbuilt, that many, if not all, are cemented. Yes, I agree but for productive uses, we are still far behind other countries],” Arsenas said.

    “That is why we [Cemex Philippines] are adding 30- to 40-percent more capacity in APO [Cement plants] . . . [because]we see a lot of growth in the Visayas region,” he added.

    With the increasing demand for cement, Cemex—the second largest in the industry in the country—also put up BPO facilities to attend to the needs of their client faster than the traditional way of going through dealers.

    At present, Cemex supplies cement to construction projects mostly in Metro Manila in Luzon— for Ayala Corp., Ayala Land, Filinvest and SM, among others—and for projects in Cebu, Davao, Bacolod and Cagayan de Oro in Visayas and Mindanao.

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