People asked me, as an Inn Keeper of the hotel industry and a Chairman of the cement industry, how I view these totally different roles.
My answer: "Operating a hotel is my hobby. It is a humanistic extension in the journey of my life. However, operating a cement business is a pursuit of extreme 'professionalism' for me. "
Professionalism is a pure holy term. It is not merely the professionalism that is to be improved in technology or the bright achievement to be pursued in the business operations. It is also the professionalism in the creation of the most harmonious relations between industry and nature. Is this not the primary professionalism of the cement industry in the pursuit of the complicated relations between mankind and the nature?
Various professionalisms are brought into practice in different areas and these are the power that drives human civilization forward.
Humans need to find a comfortable and a safe living environment that can meet various requirements for survival. We need city walls for defense, roads for transport, lighthouses for navigation, dikes and dams for flood control and storage of water.
Cement helps humans construct comfortable buildings quickly to isolate the threats to our life. It is this safe space that gives birth to words, languages, thoughts, philosophies, sciences, arts, dances, music, and those quality of humanism that we take pride in ourselves and call "civilization".
In 1962, Taiwan Cement became the first IPO company in Taiwan with the stock number of 1101. This means that TCC is concerned about the social benefits while operating the business, and this is our persistent mission. Or we can say, only the industry that is supported in society can grow and march forward permanently. TCC always plays a role like this.
We cannot have an insight into the challenges that we are facing without liberalized thought or a broad horizon. We must re-consider the complicated relations among the environment, land and mankind.
Today, when the linear economy has come to the end, an unavoidable brand new challenge is pending. The circular economy is not an abstract noun any more. In fact, it has existed long before the noun appeared and we found it when humans ran into a predicament.
TCC believes in and executes the circular economy. The thoughts of the circular economy helps Taiwan come out of the predicament of insufficient resources and convert waste into precious energy.
We have continuously invested more than NT$10 billion dollars in environment-friendly equipment. This is why we can confidently give assistance in the disposal and cooperate with the government agencies in different administrative districts. The valuable experience that we have learned from the disposal of waste will extend to more areas of industrial and hazardous waste. This will further give a broader horizon for us.
The investment in the environmental protection sector also have fruitful results continuously.
TCC has been commissioned by the Anshun City People’s Government, Guizhou Province, to dispose of the garbage in cement kilns since 2015. 42,600 tons of garbage were disposed of in 2017, an increase of 10,900 tons in comparison with 2016. The incineration plant business group in Taiwan services the people in Taiwan and the disposal volume of both household and general industrial waste reaches more than 30%, respectively. In addition to the household waste, TCC is engaged in the disposal of general industrial waste and the waste materials produced by power plants and science-based industrial parks and provides services in these areas.
The waste produced in the human civilization is treasure to TCC.
We have invested NT$ 1.4 billion in the development of green energy during the period from 2017 to 2018 and focused on the fields of solar energy, wind power and geothermal energy in Taiwan. 14MW photoelectric and 7MW wind power facilities are under construction on the site in the Changhua Coastal Industrial Park, and on-grid power generation is expected in this year and the next years. Other sites have been acquired and deployment has been conducted. We hope to make contribution to the sustainable development of the environment through investment in energy transformation. We have also improved our capability of capturing green gas in a calcium looping process during the production of the cement and creating more values from the captured carbon dioxide.
After all, what we are expecting though these efforts is the return of clean sunshine, air and water to nature and mankind.
Progress is an ongoing process of changes and upgrades in the specifications.
The investment in the battery field is a long way hard to go. The loss was controlled and reduced from NT$ 430 million in 2015, NT$ 280 million in 2016 to less than NT$ 9 million in 2017. This figure is very encouraging.
It shows a potential to see a bright achievement in the future.
The TCC Heping Plant assisted the government in the disposal of waste tires in 2017. The dioxin emission data was produced in October 2017. It showed a figure of "0.015ng/Nm3". We were stupefied for one second and then had a deep breathing. "0.015ng/Nm3" was a figure that held our breath because it was acquired only with conscience and good faith.
EU, Japan, and the USA set a dioxin emission standard of 0.1 ng/Nm3 for cement kilns in the disposal of solid waste. The figure produced during the trial incineration of waste tires in our cement plant is 0.015 ng/Nm3, far less than the standard set by these advanced countries. What I thought first in my mind when I saw the figure was "TCC, we made it!" From 1, 0.1 to 0.015, this is an extreme professional figure of TCC and a "mission impossible" that all the TCC folks accomplished jointly and persistently. We show our highest respect to all the employees of TCC. We know that the conversion of every specification is an extreme demanding process. Only persistent beliefs and will power can help us break through the difficult and arduous circumstances. This is also the direction in which we will make efforts over the 30 or even 50 years in the future. Change of specifications is not a punishment but an opportunity to TCC.
The Green Mark for the cement industry is expected to announce at the end of August 2018. The "Gold Cement Green Mark" requires a blending rate of recycled material up to more than 15%, while 10% is required for the silver green mark. The substitute materials that TCC used in 2017 was 186 kg for a ton of cement. Creation and progress are not only a belief or willpower, but also a process of long-term efforts. For enterprises, specifications must be performable, practicable, sustainable and systematic. These need time and experience for incubation and maturation.
TCC is never a company that falls behind the specifications, but a pioneer that leads in front of the specifications and sees a broader picture the followers cannot see.
The folks in the cement industry are the people interacting with the environment to create better living conditions for mankind. What TCC deals with is the long-term changing and fluctuating relations between mankind and the living environment.
We have become familiar with the geology, climate, national conditions, and so on of this land during a long period of time over 72 years, especially the people who live on this land diligently.
We always believe that Taiwan has potential energy and wisdom beyond the current status, and a kindling or an opportunity may trigger the potential power that has been accumulated for a long time.
By calculating the consolidated production volume of cement and clinker, 57.47 million tons of products were produced in Taiwan and China with a decrease of 1.9% in comparison with the 58.57 tons of reduction volume in 2016. 4.34 million m3 of pre-mixed concrete were produced with a growth rate of 5.1% in comparison with the 4.13 million m3 in the previous year.
The consolidated sales revenue of cement, clinker and pre-mixed concrete was about NT$ 17 billion in Taiwan with a reduction of 5.1% in comparison with the amount of NT$ 17.9 billion in the previous year. The total sales revenue in Taiwan and China was about NT$ 71.9 billion in 2017 with a growth rate of 9.9% in comparison with the amount of NT$ 65.4 billion in the previous year.
As for the overall operating performance, the net profit after tax was NT$ 7.594,250 billion. The achievement rate of the annual budget was 88%. This shows a growth rate of 19% with an increase of NT$ 1.235,800 billion in comparison with 2016. The consolidated net profit after tax was NT$10.322,800 billion. The achievement rate of the annual budget was 86%. This shows a growth rate of 17% with an increase of NT$ 1.480,730 billion in comparison with 2016.
In 2018, we will make every effort to achieve the goals of selling cement and clinker (including the materials to be used by the pre-mixed concrete plants) in Taiwan and China to a total volume of 57.33 million tons and selling pre-mixed concrete in these areas to a total volume of 5.32 million m3.
The development project in Gushan, Kaohsiung City, and the incubation center in Hualian Plant will be planned as a base of TTC for the formation of thoughts and R&D of technologies.
The future is intangible. We believe that the real imagination exists inherently and it is up to the self to trigger this potential power. This is why we are concerned about cultivation of the “individual” and willing to wait with patience.
Looking into the future from the very beginning of the story...
Let’s return to the original intention to find the harmonious co-existence of mankind and the nature and pursue a better life. This is our mission. This is our industry, a fascinating and sustainable industry.
Finally, please allow me to share a phrase of poetry from the famous American poet, Robert Frost:
Two roads diverged in a wood,
and I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
"Two forked roads in the wood. I selected the one less travelers went through and the future became totally different."