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U.S. LIMESTONE PRODUCERS FILE ANTIDUMPING DUTIES AGAINST MEXICO

 U.S. LIMESTONE PRODUCERS FILE ANTIDUMPING DUTIES AGAINST MEXICO
 WASHINGTON, May 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Two producers and a wholesale distributor of crushed limestone in Southeast Texas today filed an antidumping duty petition with the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. International Trade Commission against crushed limestone from Mexico.
 The petition alleges that crushed limestone base and aggregate produced by Calizas Industrializadas del Carmen S.A. de C.V. of Playa Del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico, is being sold to the United States at major margins of dumping. Calica is a joint venture of Ingenieros Civilies Asociados (ICA), a leading Mexican engineering and construction firm, and Vulcan Materials Company, one of the largest U.S. producers of construction aggregates.
 The petition alleges that as a result of the surge in imports from Mexico into the region, the regional producers have suffered a significant loss of sales, a deadline in their share of the regional market, a decline in production, shipments, capacity utilization, employment, prices, profitability and capital investment, and rising inventories of unsold crushed limestone product.
 Crushed limestone base material is used in the construction of roadways, parking areas and pavements. It is used underneath asphalt or concrete roads. Crushed limestone aggregate is used in asphalt and concrete, in pavements and in structures.
 The petition alleges that Calica and its joint venture partner Vulcan are selling Mexican crushed limestone in the Southeast Texas region below its cost of production, and that the mean average dumping margin of the base material is $5.12 per ton delivered, while the mean average dumping margin for the aggregate material is $3.10 per ton.
 The petition indicates that the imports from Mexico are being concentrated through the ports of Houston, Galveston and Port Arthur, Texas, into the Southeast Texas region, which includes the cities of Austin, Beaumont, Corpus Christi, Galveston, Houston and San Antonio. The petition alleges that the Mexican crushed limestone is underselling the Texas product within the region by substantial margins with the result that the regional Texas quarries have lost large volumes of sales and have suffered significant depression of their selling prices.
 The Calica quarry is the result of an investment in excess of $100 million by the joint venture partners. Exports are exclusively to the United States and commenced in 1990 when they achieved a 5.8 percent share of estimated consumption in the Southeast Texas region. In 1991, this increased to 11.1 percent. Imports from Mexico have been increasingly concentrated in the region, rising from 56.9 percent of total imports from Mexico in 1990 to 61.8 percent in 1991, and to 74.7 percent in the first two months of 1992.
 The petition asks the U.S. government agencies responsible for administering the antidumping statute to initiate an investigation to collect the relevant facts from the interested parties, and to determine that the regional Southeast Texas crushed limestone industry is being materially injured and threatened with further material injury, by reason of the dumped imports from Mexico. The Department of Commerce will determine within 20 days whether to initiate the requested investigation. The International Trade Commission will determine within 25 days thereafter whether there is a reasonable indication of material injury to the Southeast Texas region by reason of the imports alleged to be dumped. If these actions are affirmative, the investigation will continue with the Commerce Department securing detailed information regarding selling prices and production costs from Calica and Vulcan. It will make its preliminary determination of whether it has reason to believe or suspect that the crushed limestone from Mexico is being dumped within 160 days from today's filing.
 -0- 5/21/92
 /CONTACT: John R. Moran of Parker LaFarge, Inc., 713-926-4461; William B. Snead of Texas Crushed Stone Co., 512-863-5511; or Robert R. Robinson of Gulf Coast Limestone, 713-474-4124/ CO: ST: Texas IN: MNG SU:


MH-DC -- DC033 -- 3006 05/21/92 15:56 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 21, 1992
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