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AMLO warns of harder measures if agreement not reached with U.S. Sac Tun in Playa del Carmen

Playa del Carmen, Q.R. — President Andrés Manuel López Obrador says harder measures are not out of the question if an agreement cannot be reached with U.S. company Sac Tun.

The statement was made due to an ongoing legal battle by the company against the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. Sac Tun (formally Calica) is suing the Mexican government for $1.5 billion USD because they are no longer allowed to extract limestone in Playa del Carmen.

AMLO warned that he will resort to international courts and even to the United Nations in the litigation battle with Sac Tun and its parent company, Vulcan Materials, if an agreement is not reached to put an end to their extraction of sascab outside Playa del Carmen.

Mexico’s President said that his government is seeking an agreement with the company after years of ongoing environmental damage across 500 hectares due to the extraction of limestone material used for U.S. construction.

In a recent press conference, AMLO said the company no longer has permits and do not have more exploitable surface, so they must reach an agreement. He denounced that the company, who have offices in Mexico, are being used to “buy whoever is left, and that’s how they resolve it.”

He has already instructed the Mexican Ambassador to the United States, Esteban Moctezuma Barragán, to contact the company directly in the United States, away from representatives.

He has also suggested that the seaside extraction site area near Punta Venado be turned into a tourist attraction, similar to Xochimilco in Cancun.

“Permits are given. A tourist area is made. We are looking for an agreement, but they want $1.5 billion dollars. We are going to work on an agreement, and if not, we are going to defend the point internationally, not only in Mexico,” he said referring to the environmental matters of the site as a “disorder”.

The company was established in 1986 in the Municipality of Cozumel, however, it has carried out the exploitation of stone exported to the United States from the port in Playa del Carmen. The company was granted a concession by the government of Ernesto Zedillo Ponce de León (1994-2000) to then company Calica (Calizas Industriales del Carmen), now called Sac Tun.