6th June, 2011
The price of cement dropped by about 26 per cent in some major towns in Delta in the last one month, according to an investigation by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
The investigation revealed that the price of the commodity fell from N2,600 to N1,900 in Asaba, in the second week of May.
The affected brands are Elephant and Dangote, which are commonly found in the state capital and major cities like Warri, Sapele, Agbor and Ughelli.
Some cement dealers in Asaba, who spoke to NAN, attributed the reduction in price to the directive from the Federal Government to that effect.
The government had directed cement manufacturers and distributors to reduce the price of cement to the barest minimum.
One of the dealers, Mr Okadike Eze, said it was about four weeks ago that â€œwe observed that our distributors had reduced the price of cement.
â€œThere is no doubt that the drop in price of the commodity is in compliance with the governmentâ€™s directive to cement manufacturers to reduce the price to the barest minimum.
â€œAs you can see, they are really complying with the directive, and even the commodity that has been scarce is now available everywhere,â€ Eze said.
Mrs. Kate Nwani, another dealer, said that if manufacturers and distributors could reduce the price of cement in compliance with government directive, â€œit means that if further pressure is applied by government, the price can still go down.â€
â€œIf countries like Togo and Ghana can sell cement at between N1,300 and N1,350 a bag, the commodity should sell at a lower price in Nigeria,â€ she said.
Nwani called on the Federal Government to show more interest in cement business by ensuring that the price was further reduced â€œso that the acute housing problem in the country can be addressed.â€