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GCCA holds first AGM and Symposium

Benjamin Sporton and Albert Manifold

Concrete positioning and sustainability in sharp focus as global cement and concrete industry gathers in London

AT its inaugural Annual General Meeting and Symposium, the Global Cement and Concrete Association (GCCA), which represents cement and concrete producers from around the world, gathered in London today and set out its priorities and work programme with the specific aim of strengthening the sector’s contribution to sustainable construction.

The GCCA work programme will focus on the following priority areas:

  • Position concrete as the sustainable building material of choice
  • Promote international best practice in the areas of safety, production and the use of cement and concrete in the built environment
  • Foster innovation in the cement and concrete sectors
  • Make a positive contribution to global sustainable development
  • Promote the principles of a circular economy across the value chain.

The work programme sets the direction for the GCCA and its newly appointed executive team, towards achieving its sustainability objectives and addressing the full lifecycle of cement and concrete.

Benjamin Sporton (left of photo), chief executive of the GCCA, said: ‘Today we have taken a decisive step-forward in setting our priorities and work programme. Sustainability, innovation, and recognizing the vital role of concrete in our lives and in tackling climate change will be at the heart of everything we do.

‘Concrete is the enabler of critical buildings and infrastructure that enhance the way we live – safe and durable homes, roads, hospitals, clean water, effective wastewater management, as well as providing the vital structures for the clean energy of tomorrow.’

At its AGM, GCCA member companies ratified key deliverables for the Association, which was founded earlier in the year by leading cement and concrete companies from across the globe. Chief executive officers of more than 30 companies attended the event.

Albert Manifold (right of photo), chief executive of CRH plc, was confirmed as GCCA President and will serve for two years. Fernando A. González, chief executive of CEMEX, and Jianglin Cao, chief executive of CNBM, were confirmed as Vice-Presidents.

Continuing the commitment of the industry to sustainability, the London meeting also confirmed the launch of a GCCA Sustainability Charter with reporting guidelines for safety, CO2 emissions, co-processing of waste, and water.

Speaking at the meeting, GCCA President Albert Manifold said: ‘The GCCA is an authoritative sector-wide voice; in just a short number of months it already represents 35% of global cement production. I have great pride in being confirmed as President at our inaugural AGM.

‘As we continue to grow, the GCCA will provide leadership in the manufacture and use of cement and concrete. We look forward to shaping a sustainable future for cement and concrete and demonstrating how our product can help build a better world.’

As part of the annual gathering an industry symposium also took place featuring a range of renowned speakers leading a discussion on ‘Global Trends in Construction’, with panellists Michael Birshan (McKinsey & Company), Elizabeth ‘Beth’ Heider (Skanska) and Haiyan Wang (China India Institute).

The meeting confirmed growth of the organization to 32 member companies and 9 affiliate organizations from around the world.

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