About 2,500 fly ash brick manufacturing units operate in AP and since the last three months, these units have been utilising only 25-30 per cent of their capacity
Fly ash brick production in Andhra Pradesh has dropped over 70 per cent in the last two to three months due to a slowdown in construction activity.
"Owing to the new sand policy, sand prices have increased abnormally and are also in short supply, thereby affecting fly ash brick production," said P Venkateswara Rao, general secretary, Federation of Fly Ash Brick Manufacturers Association, AP.
About 2,500 fly ash brick manufacturing units operate in AP. Each unit has a production capacity of between 10 tonnes and 30 tonnes a day but since the last three months, these units have been utilising only 25-30 per cent of their capacity as there is very little demand, he said.
Construction activity in Vizag city has slowed down due to unavailability of sand and over the last two-three weeks, there has been no supply by government agencies. Though some private players are making sand available, it costs Rs 2,500-2,600 per cubic metre, said K Subba Raju, chairman, Credai, AP Chapter.
Besides, the cost of raw material used in making fly ash bricks too have increased significantly, Venkateswara Rao, said.
"Cement, which accounts for 40 per cent production cost of fly ash bricks, has increased from Rs 240-250 to Rs 370-380 per bag, crusher dust cost is up from Rs 50 a tonne to Rs 300 and slag rate has increased from Rs 30-40 to Rs 220 per tonne. However, the brick cost has not increased mainly due to lack of demand," he added.