Eagle Cement Corp. said it started operating a third production line in Bulacan that will increase its capacity by two million metric tons.
Eagle Cement president and chief executive John Paul Ang said in an interview following the annual stockholders’ meeting it began producing cement from its third line in April which would boost total capacity to 7.1 million MT by the second half.
“We have started producing cement in our line 3 plant, but it is not yet operating at full capacity. We will start to feel the financial impact of the plant in the second half of the year,” Ang said.
Ang said the plan was to start operating at full capacity by the third quarter.
“The opening of our third production line will allow us to better serve new markets in Regions IV and V. This will give our company an increased role in the country’s infrastructure push, as we help build the future of Filipino communities,” Ang said.
Eagle Cement chief finance officer Monica Ang-Mercado said the third production line was granted a three-year income tax holiday by the Board of Investments.
Mercado said the company was expected to generate P530 million in savings for the period 2018 to 2020 from the fiscal incentives.
Meanwhile, Eagle Cement said it was on track with the construction of a new facility in Cebu with 2-million-ton capacity.
The plant, which will serve the Visayas and Mindanao market, is scheduled for completion by 2020.
Eagle Cement said it expected the cement industry to continue to face challenges this year, particularly from the continued entry of cement imports, depreciation of the peso against the dollar and stiff competition among cement players.
It said demand was expected to remain robust, evident in its expansion strategy.
“Private consumption is still strong as conglomerates embark on expansion strategies, and the government remains steadfast in its national infrastructure push. All of our efforts are geared towards helping provide the cement demand of the local economy, through quality products that will become part of the country’s future,” Ang said.
Share price of Eagle Cement closed lower by 0.13 percent Thursday to P15.88.