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Potential Risks of Hiring Contract Technical Workers for Organizations

Hiring contract technical workers can come with certain risks for organizations. Some of the potential risks include:

Quality of work: Contract technical workers may not be as invested in the organization’s long-term success as permanent employees. As a result, they may not produce the same quality of work or exhibit the same level of commitment to the job.

Security risks: Contract technical workers may have access to sensitive company data or systems, which could pose a security risk if proper controls are not in place. Organizations need to ensure that they have appropriate safeguards in place to protect their data and systems.

Compliance risks: Contract technical workers may not be familiar with the organization’s policies and procedures, which could lead to compliance issues. Organizations need to ensure that their contract workers are aware of all relevant policies and procedures and are following them.

Communication risks: Contract technical workers may not be as integrated into the organization’s culture and may not communicate as effectively with other team members. This can lead to misunderstandings and delays in projects.

Dependence risks:
Organizations may become too dependent on contract technical workers and find it difficult to transition to permanent employees. This could create a talent gap if the contract workers decide to leave the organization.

Legal risks: Organizations need to ensure that they are complying with all relevant labor laws and regulations when hiring contract technical workers. Failure to comply could lead to legal issues and financial penalties.

To mitigate these risks, organizations should have a comprehensive plan in place for hiring and managing contract technical workers. This plan should include clear expectations and communication channels, proper training and onboarding, and regular performance evaluations. By taking a proactive approach to managing contract workers, organizations can minimize the risks associated with this type of employment.

Cement industry in Pakistan – Opportunities and challenges

The cement industry is excelling in Pakistan due to its high demand. Cement consumption, as well as exports, are rising domestically since after the resumption of all the business activities that are facing a decline due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Cement is one of the most significant and widely used materials in order to make a building or any infrastructure in the modern age. Cement is used to make the structures of the buildings, bridges, roads, etc. Due to the high consumption of cement each year the development is reported along with the progress also in the socio-economic growth.

According to the sources Pakistan has a well-developed and successfully running cement industry with the availability of abundant raw material. However, Pakistan is the 14th largest cement producer worldwide and also ranked among the top 5 exporters of cement in the world.

History of Cement Industry in Pakistan

The concrete cement business of Pakistan has made considerable progress since 1947. Following Partition, the yearly creation of concrete in the nation was 300,000 tons each year and the complete or total installed capacity introduced a limit that was 470,000 tons for every annum.

The primary concrete manufacturing plant, set up in 1921, around there, that is presently Pakistan, was at Wah, Punjab.

According to the sources, by the year 1954, it all became clear that the demand for this concrete cement was much higher than the installed capacity. However, 1 Million tons was the requirement for annual dealing but only over 660,000 tons were being supplied.

Moreover, in order to cater to the production shortage, the PIDC- Pakistan Industrial Development Corporation took the initiative of expanding the production capacity in the country by taking all the measures to meet the required level.

Sales and Growth or Cement Industry in 2021

The cement industry in Pakistan is one of the high contributors to the overall growth of the economy of the country. However, the sales of the cement industry rose as per the data shared by the APCMA- All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers Association.

As per the report shared by APCMA, the cement sales in Pakistan came as total at 5.37 Million tons in March 2021 right against the sales of 3.72 Million tons that were recorded in the same month of the previous year.

The Cement Mills that are based in the Southern regions have sold around 753,704 tons of cement in the domestic market only that is 62.28% higher than the sales of 464,440 tons that was recorded in March or the previous year, 2020.

The cement industry is flourishing due to the high demand in the domestic markets and also the exports from the mills are recorded high. The exports in the northern region have soared at 162.58% that is just going up right from 106,759 tons in March 2020 to the level of 280,330 tons in the March of the current year of 2021.

There are many opportunities in this cement industry; however, where there are opportunities, there are challenges also. The cement Industry growth has also created many opportunities for employment in the country as thousands of people are working in this industry in order to meet the requirement and demand.

Cement Industry Jobs in Pakistan

Cement industry plants are set in many areas of the country; however, thousands of new opening for vacancies are opened every year where people from different cities also applied to get the job in the growing industry.

As per the reports shared by APCMA, there are currently 24 operational cement plants in Pakistan. Online job openings are also available in this industry for different cities that people can check if they are in search to get a job here.

List of Cement Industry in Pakistan

There are integrated about 27 integrated plants of cement in Pakistan. Many giant groups are working in this industry; however, the cement companies in Pakistan are as follows:

Lucky Cement Ltd.
Bestway Cement Ltd.
Fauji Cement Company Ltd.
Anwarzaib White Cement Ltd.
DG KhanCement
Attock Cement Pakistan Ltd.
Fecto Cement Ltd.
Dewan Cement
Cherat Cement Company Ltd.
Thatta Cement Company

There are many other cement companies located in Pakistan that have their producing plant in the country. Overall the whole industry has many challenges to face in the country for which strategies are designed to resolve all the hurdles in the way.

Cement industry in Pakistan- Opportunities

Currently, Pakistan is experiencing the fastest-growing urbanization in Asia; however, the studies have shown that more than half of the population of the country will be living in the cities and not in the small villages where the resources are limited.

The housing schemes are announced on a continual basis by the Prime Minister, it is mostly for the people belonging to the lower class but they are also getting the advantage to grow.

The cement industries are flourishing due to the more projects signed and built by the government in terms of making the housing societies where the cement is the most essential item to be used.

Not only the housing schemes but the CPEC infrastructures have also created a huge demand for cement because of its high consumption; however, this industry that is already working as a national contributor to the economy has got an advantage to grow even more.

The cement manufacturers are seeing a new opportunity in the industry with CPEC and other ongoing projects which have already got legal approval.

According to the latest update by the official source, the cement producers of Pakistan have planned to expand the production capacity by more than about 40% that is from 69 Million tons to about 99 million tons in the upcoming years.

It has been forecasted that the growth rate will also increase by 10 to 15% by increasing sales annually. These official statements are shared by the APCMA.

More production will also raise the export; whereas the CPEC projects that are already installed will also require the high consumption of cement.

The employment is also expected to get a high boost that will also affect the economy in a positive way where many of the unemployed Pakistanis will get the opportunity to work with the CPEC projects and also for the cement industry where while increasing the capacity or cement plants will require more labor to work for its production.

According to the CEO of one of the top Cement Company Bestway Cement, “CPEC will surely ensure that the economy will boost or grow at a faster pace by generating employment as well as the business opportunities for many of the other industries and also the cement industry that will also be at the helm of it.”

Cement industry in Pakistan- Challenges

Due to the new projects, the beneficial opportunities for the economy are great by the cement industry in Pakistan; however, there are some challenges that the industry has faced and usually faces. The pandemic has also created a lot of hurdles in the industry due to the lockdown and uncertain interruption in the exports.

The cement industry in Pakistan faces the challenges like the ones that are on the domestic front and also owing to the flatness in demand; meanwhile, currently, this challenge is not an issue for the industry because the growth is high.

The currency depreciation is also one of the major challenges that hit the whole cement industry and also the other industries of the country. The high markups and the price completion are also the major challenges that affect the whole industry.

The high demand for cement has made all the possible opportunities to make the most benefit of it and the challenges are not currently with the industry but the specific companies that are facing a challenge to compete with the rivals in the industry.

Growth of Cement Industry in Pakistan

According to the sources, the growth rate of 40% has been recorded in the current year of 2021; whereas, it is anticipated to grow more with the passage of time and in the next years because of the high demand.

The growth of the cement industry recorded in April 2021 is about 40.4% that is when the total cement dispatches have reached about 4.94Mt as comparing to the 3.52Mt that was during the same month of 2020.

More opportunities are expected to grow in this sector of cement where the demand and the requirement will soon raise due to the upcoming projects not only in a single province but in the different provinces of the country.

The contribution of this sector is prominent in the country where the stats are clearly towards the bright as well as the successful side of growth. The exports of various goods are also increasing in Pakistan where the overall export rate has increased in 2021.

The cement export rate is also expected to grow more which will not only help in financial terms but also make strong ties with the other foreign countries where the export of cement is made.

How Cement Is Made

Cement is a finely milled mineral powder, usually grey in color. The most important raw materials for the production of cement are limestone, clay, and marl. Mixed with water, cement serves as an adhesive to bind sand, gravel, and hard rock in concrete. Cement hardens both in the air and underwater, and remains in its hardened state once reached.

Cement is usually available in the form of a homogeneous bulk dry good. Its characteristics are standardized in order to ensure the required stability, reliability, and processability in the application.

Cements are classified according to their early and final strength as well as their composition. In addition to cements that consist of 100% clinker, there are so-called composite cements, in which a portion of the clinker is replaced by alternative raw materials, such as fly ash, ground slag, or limestone. As the production of clinker is energy-intensive and releases large amounts of CO2, the use of alternative raw materials can conserve natural resources and reduce CO2 emissions.

Depending on the desired application, different types of cement – each with a specific composition – are necessary. Cement characteristics can also be modified through the use of additives.

Refractory lining material recommendation for cement rotary kiln

Following are constantly improvements of the cement industry, the rotary kiln as the core part of cement production lines is developing to be large scale short kiln, but the process is more complicated and more strictly requirement on refractory materials. our recommended REFRACTORY analyzed the matched refractory materials for rotary kiln linings for reference.

Normally, rotary kiln can be with wet process and dry process types, both include below working zones: Discharge end/outlet zone, Lower transition zone, central burning zone, Upper transition zone, Safety Zone, Preheating zone/Calcining zone, Chain zone, Inlet zone, Inlet

Refractory lining recommendation for different zones:

Inlet zone

Phosphate combined with high alumina brick
Anti-spalling high alumina brick
Alkali-resistant fire brick
Anti-skinning SiC castable

Lower transition zone

Lower transition zone operating temperature is lower, but ling bricks should be with lower thermal conductivity and wear resistance. The economic choice is anti-spalling high alumina brick, but high alumina brick with SiC is superb in chemical and physical properties and longer service life.
Anti-spalling high alumina brick
High alumina brick with SiC/ Silica-mullite brick

Upper transition zone

Upper transition zone lining is quite unstable, it requests lining bricks with good thermal shock resistance, also lower thermal conductivity, and wear resistance characteristics. In the global market, Magnesia spinel brick is widely used in cement kiln linings, but Magnesia brick is with higher thermal conductivity compared with China’s high alumina with SiC. And today silica-mullite brick is also the best option for large-scale cement rotary kiln.
Magnesia spinel brick
High alumina with SiC/Silica-mullite brick

Burning zone

Burning zone operating temperature max approx. to be 1650℃, with intense chemical reaction in this area. In this strict condition, lining bricks should be with multiple characters of anti-erosion, environment protection without chromium. Magnesia spinel brick is applied by the global market but with poor performance on hanging kiln skin. Magnesia-Fe spinel brick is a better choice, but costly.
Magnesia spinel brick
Magnesia-Fe spinel brick

Outlet zone

Outlet zone lining is quite unstable, the temperature is easily up and down due to operating necessaries, thus lining bricks have to be with good thermal shock resistance, also lower thermal conductivity, and wear resistance characteristics. In the global market, Magnesia spinel brick is widely used in cement kiln linings, but Magnesia brick is with higher thermal conductivity compared with China’s high alumina with SiC. Today silica-mullite brick is the best option for large-scale cement rotary kilns. And thermal shock-resistant castables are widely used for the outlet zone.
Anti-spalling high alumina brick
High alumina brick with SiC/ Silica-mullite brick
Thermal shock resistant castable

Bag filter explosion !! state possible reasons ?

1. Use only inert gas for heating mill flow; Gas of less than 4% oxygen preheater gases (advisable. )
2. Bag filter bags should be selected of anti-static property and other properties like Anti-acidic and Anti-hydrostatic
3. Bag filter structure should have proper strong earthing property. Very important to do megger once in a year
4. High CO mill tripping at 2000ppm should be provided. Do not operate more than 12% oxygen at its outlet in presence of CO.
5. Left over coal inside mill or bag house of high VM value may burn spontaneously with passage of time. Better to clean up before stoppage by operating its transport.
6. Most explosion occurs at mill start up. Do not allow water to enter in bag house even from purging air.
7. Explosion doors of membrane type at right place on bag house should be there.
Also explosion door needed at gas duct after mill and before bag house
8. Check safety interlocks especially of temp. and CO interlocks.
9. All others you may find especially CO2 extinguisher purging interlock with mill and bag house
10. CO2 storage and purging system should be 100% in order

The end of Coal Price Rush

It’s a catch 22 situation. At one end we want to curb greenhouse gases and on the other we crave for cheap power and source of energy for industrial units.

The coal is widely considered the cheapest source to produce energy but at the cost of damaging our environment as it’s the dirtiest one, harming our very existence. The demand for electricity surged as global economy recovered from the pandemic and winter is forthcoming.

China tried put its act together and on 27th Oct officials met with coal producers to agree on measures to fix pricing [read more]. Other measure by The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) was looking into the costs and profitability of the coal sector in an effort to work out a mechanism to guide prices to move within a reasonable range. As China is the world’s biggest producer and consumer of coal, and to meet demand, it has been increasing output but further improvement needs to be seen on supply side. With this intervention good news came on 1st Nov from NDRC that “China has seen significant improvement in its coal supply as production has greatly expanded and prices have stabilized”.

This raises the question that is free economy model really up to the mark to provide best prices for the consumers or can it be mangled by group of producers in the name of logistics issues post pandemic to cover loss during lockdowns and to let them become profiteers without repercussions.
The South African coal API4 was trading at $60 year ago on 2nd Nov 2020, it peaked to $238.25 on 6th Oct 2021, and now it’s at $129.9 on 2nd Nov 2021. Let’s hope that the super cycle is over and we are back to normalization.