To support rescue efforts, Lafarge has donated 1.5 million euros to the cities of Dujiangyan and Mianyang, situated in Sichuan Province. Both cities were severely affected by a 7.8-magnitude earthquake on May 12.
Lafarge runs Cement and Gypsum operations in Sichuan Province. One of its 16,000 employees in China was killed by the collapse of his home during the earthquake. Two of the Group's 27 Chinese plants were damaged - the cement plants of Dujiangyan and Jiangyou. Production is currently stopped at both plants. Lafarge is doing everything possible to ensure the well-being of its employees and re-start production at these two plants as soon as possible.
To date, Lafarge has provided shelter and support for over 3,000 people at its Jiangyou plant in Mianyang and over 300 people in Dujiangyan, providing them with food, water, sanitary facilities and temporary shelters. Meanwhile, around 100 Lafarge employees are working side by side with local rescue teams and the Group has supplied equipment such as quarry vehicles to free those people still trapped in the rubble and to transport food supplies into the affected regions.
Lafarge has launched a donation drive among its 16,000 employees in China to support its employees in the disaster areas. The Group will match the amount donated by employees.
Bruno Lafont, Chairman and CEO of Lafarge, who arrived in China the day after the disaster, held an emergency meeting in Beijing as soon as he arrived. Lafarge immediately set up a 50-person task force, to help employees and the local population, and afterwards to work on re-starting production at the Dujiangyan and JiangYou plants.
Bruno Lafont declared:
"On behalf of Lafarge, I would like to extend my sincere condolences to China and to all those who have lost family and friends in this catastrophe. Since the earthquake, we have been focused on helping our employees, their families and the local communities around our plants affected by this tragedy. At this difficult time, Lafarge is determined to do everything possible to support both its employees and the local population surrounding its operations."
Bruno Lafont will go to Sichuan on Friday 16 May, to meet employees and the local people currently being sheltered at these two plants, as well as the local authorities.
Notes to editors
About Lafarge in China
Lafarge entered the Chinese market in 1994 and is now present in all of its businesses (Cement, Aggregates & Concrete and Gypsum), with around 16,000 employees. Lafarge Shui On Cement is the market leader in south-west China with a total production capacity of around 24 million tonnes.
Lafarge is the world leader in building materials, with top-ranking positions in all of its businesses: Cement, Aggregates & Concrete and Gypsum. With 90,000 employees in 76 countries, Lafarge posted sales of Euros 17.6 billion and net income of Euros 1.9 billion in 2007.
Lafarge is the only company in the construction materials sector to be listed in the 2008 ‘100 Global Most Sustainable Corporations in the World'. Lafarge has been committed to sustainable development for many years, pursuing a strategy that combines industrial know-how with performance, value creation, respect for employees and local cultures, environmental protection and the conservation of natural resources and energy. To make advances in building materials, Lafarge places the customer at the heart of its concerns. It offers the construction industry and the general public innovative solutions bringing greater safety, comfort and quality to their everyday surroundings.