Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Rising costs drive up brick prices: traders

Brick prices are rising fast as the cost of production increases, say traders. Kaung Htet / The Myanmar TimesBrick prices are rising fast as the cost of production increases, say traders. Kaung Htet / The Myanmar Times

Brick prices are shooting upwards on the back of a rising costs, traders said last week.

“Demand for bricks is high because there are so many construction projects in Yangon,” said U Nyi Nyi, the owner of Yadana Tun construction materials wholesale shop in Mingalar Taung Nyunt township. “But the supply is much lower than last year,” he said in the last week of May.

He said handmade bricks were selling for K85 each, while machine-made bricks cost about K100, compared with K70-75 and K80-90 respectively at this time last year.

“Shops in Yangon buy most of their bricks from Taikkyi, Hlawga, Hmawbi, Danyin Gone and Insein townships in Yangon Region and from Wakema in Ayeyarwady Region.

“But for the past six months bricks from Wakema could not reach Yangon because it cost too much to transport them. The supply from Danyin Gone has also diminished, so we can say that two of the main suppliers are gone,” U Nyi Nyi said.

He added that the scarcity of firewood was also a contributing factor.

“Handmade bricks are widely used in construction projects but the makers need lots of firewood to fire their kilns. As a result, firewood prices are rising, as are wages, so the cost of making bricks is increasing as a result,” he said.

U Nyi Nyi said brickmakers were only meeting about 70 percent of demand, adding that most construction sites are in thee six downtown townships, plus Kamaryut, Bahan, Mayangone, Thaketa and Thingangyun townships.

U Than Tun, owner of Than Tun and Brothers brick wholesale in South Dagon township, said: “Machine-made bricks from Danyin Gone township are well known and popular but there is not enough supply. Some people are charging up to K185 a brick for Danyin Gone bricks.

“Handmade bricks are more expensive than last year too at K85-100,” he said on May 31.