The Government of Ras Al Khaimah today completed a deal with India’s Shree Cement under which the latter has acquired the emirate’s Union Cement Company (UCC).
The Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) deal has been completed exactly six months after the initial announcement in January.
The transaction was managed on behalf of the government by the Investment and Development Office (IDO) of Ras Al Khaimah.
Established in 1972, UCC is one of the leading cement manufacturers in the UAE. Prior to theacquisition by Shree Cement, UCC was a listed company on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX). It has now been de-listed from ADX and converted into a private joint stock company.
The purchase marks Shree Cement’s first foray into overseas markets, with the emirate providing it a strategic location from which to grow business across export markets in the Arabian Gulf, Middle East and East Africa. Shree Cement’s commitment to continue to invest in the growth of UCC operations and resources played a pivotal role in the government’s decision to pursue the deal, said a statement.
Sheikh Khalid bin Saud Al Qasimi, vice chairman of IDO, said: “The Investment and Development Office is pleased that Shree Cement chose Ras Al Khaimah as its first international base in a deal that will see one of the biggest players in the cement industry operate outside of its domestic market for the first time. Shree’s management team knows that our emirate has the economic structure in place to conduct successful business – including a transparent rule of law, regulations that contribute to the ease of doing business, and a long-term commitment to fostering further growth and development for our partners in businesses and industry.”
Mohamed Sultan Al Qadi, member of the board of directors of IDO, said: “Ras Al Khaimah has developed an economic environment that is attractive to foreign direct investment – which is clearly demonstrated by this transaction. The Government of Ras Al Khaimah is committed to growing its assets and divesting them only once our criteria are met and when the time is right for the Emirate and its people.”
B G Bangur, newly appointed vice chairman of UCC and chairman, Shree Cement, said: “It is an historic moment for us as this is our first acquisition outside India. We are happy to be here. I feel delighted to interact with His Highness Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi – Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah – and his modern leadership approach. Shree Cement is known for its high-energy efficiency and productivity levels. We want to make Union Cement a World-Class Company.”
UCC has a clinker capacity of 3.30 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) and cement capacity of 4.00 MTPA and it deals with a variety of types of cement including ordinary portland cement, sulphate resisting cement and oil-well cement.
With this acquisition, the total cement capacity of Shree Cement has increased from 37.9 MTPA to 41.9 MTPA. The UCC plant is located in close proximity to Ras Al Khaimah’s Saqr Port, which provides direct access to the export markets across the region. – TradeArabia News Service