HOLCIM Philippines, Inc. on Thursday said it has completed the expansion of its plant in Davao City, which is expected to boost production capacity.

The listed cement maker told the stock exchange it recently finished the P1.5-billion Davao plant expansion project which began in October 2017.

“The expansion of Holcim’s Davao plant is part of the company’s ongoing program to improve operations to better support the positive growth of Mindanao,” it said.

It started full production last month, adding 700,000 metric tons to the Davao facility’s annual cement production.

“Our company is determined to continue supporting the development of Davao and the rest of Mindanao. These initiatives strengthen our ability to contribute to the progress of the region at this time of robust growth,” Holcim Philippines President and Chief Executive Officer John Stull said in the statement.

Part of the expansion included the activation of a finish mill and installation of a new pipe for loading cement from the pier. It also covered the installation of eco-hoppers for dust emissions and an overhead crane.

Holcim Philippines earlier said it is investing $54 million to raise its cement production capacity to 12 million metric tons, boosted by projects such as the expansion of its La Union plant which finished in January.

It also allocated $300 million to expand its cement operations in Misamis Oriental and Bulacan which is expected to bump up the company’s total capacity to 13 million metric tons by the end of next year.

The cement manufacturer is hoping to take advantage of the strong demand as a result of the government’s massive infrastructure program, “Build, Build, Build.”

Holcim Philippines is part of the global building solutions company LafargeHolcim Group, which has footprint in about 80 countries.

It posted a flat net attributable income of P703.63 million in the first quarter on the back of lower sales and higher interest expenses. — Denise A. Valdez