By Special Correspondent for NP Digital
Exclusive from Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo
The recent incident involving the occupation of the Punta Venado Maritime Terminal in Quintana Roo by Mexican police and marines, accompanied by personnel from the Cemex company, has raised concerns about its potential impact on US investment in Mexico. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has described it as "a negative action" during a Senate hearing. However, the Mexican government has defended its actions, stating that they were acting under the mandate of a local Civil Court in Quintana Roo to unload cement.
Vulcan Materials, the US company that currently holds the concession for the terminal until 2037, has denounced the use of force and criticized the Mexican authorities' presence at the terminal, expressing concerns about future investment in Mexico. The company claims that there was no current contract permitting Cemex's use of the facilities after 2022. However, Cemex has stated that Vulcan had been formally made aware that negotiation of a new contract would be necessary.
The Mexican government has not presented any court order, warrant or other legal justification for their forceful entry and occupation of Vulcan's property, according to Vulcan Materials Company. The company has also stated that a Mexican federal court ordered Cemex to vacate the property and that another Mexican federal court order requires military and police forces to leave the property immediately. Vulcan owns the four parcels of property that make up its Mexico operation, including the port facilities, and lawfully holds the port concession.
The incident highlights the need for further dialogue between the two countries to address the issues raised by the incident and find a solution that is mutually beneficial and respects the interests of all parties involved. While the US government has a responsibility to protect American investment abroad, it is also important to respect the sovereignty of the host country and its legal framework. Both sides must work together to find a solution that is mutually beneficial and respects the interests of all parties involved.
In conclusion, the situation at the Punta Venado Maritime Terminal in Quintana Roo is complex and raises concerns about the potential impact on US investment in Mexico. The Mexican government and Cemex have defended their actions, stating that they were acting under the mandate of a local Civil Court in Quintana Roo to unload cement. Vulcan Materials, on the other hand, has criticized the use of force and expressed concerns about future investment in Mexico. Both sides must engage in further dialogue to find a mutually beneficial solution that respects the interests of all parties involved.