It is with this great thought that I would like to begin my message. We at JK LakshmiCement have not only imbibed this thought-process in our DNA but also constantly strive tolive it in our everyday lives and actions. The initiatives taken by Your Company over theyears since inception have all been centered on this orientation. Our endeavors towardsscaling up our capacities strengthening and sustaining our capabilities the passion webring to our zeal for success and our vision of inclusive growth that motivates us towork for the well being of the communities across the country are the core values that dene our pursuit of excellence.
At the outset I am extremely thankful to all our customers shareholders channelpartners business associates financial institutions and all our employees who are anintegral part of our stakeholder community for their invaluable support and con dence.Their continued faith and support has enabled this Company to pursue excellence and growyear after year.
India has emerged as the fastest growing major economy in the world as per the CentralStatistics Organisation (CSO) and International Monetary Fund (IMF). According to the IMFIndia's growth is expected to be around 7.2% in the 2017 18 scal and 7.7% in 2018 19.Furthermore India has distinct advantages that can propel the nation into prolongedeconomic growth. By 2020 India will have the world's youngest population and by 2030will account for almost 30 percent of the world's workforce. By 2030 the nation isprojected to have the largest middleclass population in the world which will reinforceeconomic growth through increased consumption and investment. This youthful energy wouldpump up India's GDP by at least two percentage points every year for the coming twodecades. This translates in to business getting access to young who are educatedphysically able and ones with more disposable income. This combined with annual growthrate of 7.0% and right economic policies would help India's $2 trillion economy todayjump from being the sixth largest economy in the world to being the third largest economy.
The 3rd quarter demand got impacted to some extent because of demonetization of highvalue currency which impacted construction activities temporarily for 2-3 months. Thesituation improved from middle of the last quarter onwards. In the current year too sometemporary disruption are expected with one of the most important and long a waited taxreform - GST rolled out from July. Some turbulence is expected as a reform of thismagnitude will take its own time in transition to the grassroots. Both these reforms arepoised to create a positive effect in the economic & business climate of the countryas it entails much higher degree of transparency & accountability.
India is the 2nd largest cement producer as well as consumer in the world led by theenormous growth in the infrastructure & construction sector for the last two decades.As India's current per capita consumption of cement is much lesser than the developed& other developing economies there is a significant business opportunity to cater tothe unmet & rising demand. Improvement in the demand of last quarter raises the hopethat the cement demand which has been eluding the cement manufacturers would nally beback to the earlier days of 8% plus growth. The Robust infrastructure growth plans during12th Five Year Plan will drive growth in the cement sector. The demand is expected to beboosted by growth in the real estate sector with the focus on Affordable Housing andinitiatives like smart cities. On the balance we are at a cusp of major economical shiftwhich as it happens will see the revival of the demand for cement on sustainable basis.
Your Company's performance during the financial year 2016-17 has been fairlysatisfactory and encouraging as it has achieved a volumetric growth of 9% both inproduction and sales which compares favourably with the industry's overall growth duringthe year. We have strengthened and sustained our capabilities and optimized ourefficiencies during the year and therefore continue to remain in the league of one ofthe least cost producers of cement in the country. The progress of our projects andexpansions has been at a rapid pace in the year and resulted in increasing our cementcapacity from 8.65 Mn MT in the beginning of the year to 10.9 Mn MT by the end of theyear. Continuing with our culture of people-centricity we at JK Lakshmi Cement Ltd.created some significant milestones in the year. Your Company won globally reputed"ATD Best Award" from Association for Talent Development USA (erstwhileAmerican Society for Training and Development) for its commendable efforts and practicesin building and nurturing talent through multiple interventions including training anddevelopment initiatives. Continuing our efforts towards Inclusive growth and taking ourCSR efforts further Your Company worked on a plethora of activities towards developmentand welfare of the society in the areas of Health Sanitation Education SkillDevelopment and Livelihood Interventions to name a few.
Returning to the thought from where I began my message we at JK Lakshmi Cement Ltd.are committed to our pursuit of excellence and will continue to follow the process ofscale sustain and succeed that is built on our core values and principles. We arepassionate towards not only building a sustainable and profitable business but alsotowards inclusive growth.
BHARAT HARI SINGHANIA
CHAIRMAN AND MANAGING DIRECTOR