19 Jun 2009 17:29

France's Lafarge to invest 18 bln rubles in Kaluga region cement plant

KALUGA. June 19 (Interfax) - Anatoly Artamonov, governor of Russia's Kaluga region, and Nicolas Fournier, president of Lafarge Vostok, an affiliate of France's Lafarge SA, signed an agreement on cooperation on Friday as part of a project to build a cement plant in the region.

"The agreement defines the terms of the investment project to develop the Borshchevskoye mineral field and also build a plant. Investment in the project will amount to about 18 billion rubles," the governor's administration told Interfax.

The plant will be built in the region's Ferzikovsky district.

Artamonov signed the agreement as part of his visit to France to take part in a session of the Russian-French council on economic, financial, industrial and trade issues.

Lafarge announced in April 2008 that it planned to build four cement plants in Russia - in the Kaluga and Rostov regions, the Krasnodar territory and in Korkino in the Chelyabinsk region. However, the company said at the end of 2008 that it was reducing investment in 2009 due to a decline in demand for its products. The company said investment had been restricted to 2 billion euros, while the sale of assets will exceed 1 billion euros.

Lafarge SA is one of the world's biggest cement producers. It has two plants in Russia - Uralcement in the Chelyabinsk region and Voskresenskcement in the Moscow region. The two plants are in the process of merging.