Sharp Increase in Cement Imports from Ukraine to Poland

Poland has witnessed a significant rise in cement imports from Ukraine, escalating from 52,000 tons in 2021 to over 340,000 tons in 2023, impacting various sectors beyond agriculture.

Sharp Increase in Cement Imports from Ukraine to Poland
Photo by Kamil Gliwiński / Unsplash

Recent data indicates a substantial growth in the volume of cement imported from Ukraine to Poland over the past few years. The figures have escalated from 52,000 tons in 2021, doubling to 101,000 tons in 2022, and reaching over 340,000 tons by 2023.

This surge in imports arrives amidst a downturn in Poland's domestic cement market. The country's cement production fell to 16.6 million tons in 2023, a 12% decrease compared to the previous year. Projections for 2024 are fraught with uncertainties, with anticipated sales expected to be around 16.5 million tons, according to Krzysztof Kieres, chairman of the Association of Cement Producers (SPC), during a session of the Parliamentary Team for the Development of the Cement Industry in Poland.

The increase in imports from Ukraine has been partly linked to sanctions that blocked cement imports from Belarus to Poland. Additionally, the fact that Ukraine does not incur the costs associated with the European Union's climate policy has been identified as a factor contributing to the competitive challenges faced by the Polish cement industry.

Janusz Miłuch, president of Cement Ożarów and a board member of the SPC, emphasized the importance of implementing effective measures within the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) to safeguard the Polish cement industry from the adverse effects of non-EU imports.

Poland hosts 12 cement plants, including 10 that operate in a full production cycle. Thanks to an investment exceeding 12 billion PLN, these facilities rank among the most advanced in Europe, positioning Poland as the third-largest cement producer in the European Union, behind Germany and Italy.

The data highlights the broader economic and industrial challenges posed by the dramatic increase in cement imports from Ukraine, affecting not only the Polish cement industry's competitiveness but also the national approach to import policies and trade balance.