The Builders Association of India (BAI) has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to constitute a cement regulatory authority for the sector to curb cartelisation and ‘undue profiteering’ by manufacturers.In a letter to the PM, BAI president Mu. Moahan asserted such an authority would prevent manufacturers from indulging in unethical trade practices which have been causing irreparable damage to the country’s economic growth and hurting the interests of the construction industry.BAI has substantiated its demand with the rulings and observations of various statutory bodies like Competition Commission of India, Monopolies of Restrictive Trade Practices Commission (MRTPC), submissions in Parliament and its statutory committees.Citing all these, the association has urged the Prime Minister to constitute a cement regulatory authority on the lines of the ones constituted for the telecom, real estate, insurance and aviation sectors.“Infrastructure and housing sectors are enablers of economic growth and cement is a basic input,” Mr. Mohan said. “The cement industry, however, indulges in cartelisation for profiteering,” he alleged. The cement industry was de-controlled in 1989 and de-licensed in 1991 under the economic liberalisation policy. Decisions of installation of new plants are taken by the industry based on market demand.
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