Nearshoring Risk–Mexican military seizes U.S. facility

by Carolyn Mathas

Nearshoring might not be all it’s cracked up to be. Brandon Gillespie at Fox News reported the seizure of an American company’s quarry by the Mexican military and local state police. According to Vulcan Materials, a Birmingham, Alabama-based company and largest producer of construction aggregates in the U.S., the Mexican nave, state police, and federal investigators entered the quarry early on March 14 and forced the company to allow CEMEX, a Mexican-owned materials company, to unload a shipment of cement from a ship in the port.

Although Vulcan had previously leased land to CEMEX at the site, the agreement expired last December with no progress in talks. While CEMEX completed unloading, the military and police remain in control of the property.

Vulcan has been in tension with Mexico since President Andrés Manuel López Obrador forced a shutdown of the quarry’s operations in May 2022. Obrador accused Vulcan of extracting minerals without the required permits and shipping them to the U.S. Mexico then suspended Vulcan’s customs permits on May 13, putting a strain on its ability to provide the stone construction aggregates to construct roads, bridges, and other infrastructure in the U.S.

Sen. Katie Britt, R-Ala., told Fox that the Mexican government needed to focus more on going after the cartels endangering Mexican citizens and the millions of tourists who visit the country each year.

Security footage from Vulcan’s Mexican quarry shows armed members of the Mexican military and Quintana Roo state police, as well as CEMEX personnel arriving at the main gate, forcing the guard to allow them inside. Vulcan said that the military did not present or possess any court order allowing them to enter the property legally and suggested the move could be Obrador’s first step in taking control of its port under the guise of “national security.” Vulcan speculates that CEMEX will seek to occupy the property with the support of the military and police for an unknown period and distribute its unloaded materials to its customers.

Fox News Digital reached out to the U.S. State Department for comment but has not received a response.

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