Poor quality cement imported from Egypt has caused skin poisoning, abrasions and burns on the bodies on construction workers in the Mexican state of Yucatan.
The local representative of the workers, Juan Moo, believes that a decision to buy low-cost imported cement has caused severe health problems.
He alleges that the Arabia Cement brand, imported from Egypt, has already caused about 20 workers in the region to suffer from skin poisoning, abrasions and burns … mainly on their hands and arms.
Moo alleges that CDMS del Sureste was in charge of importing the material and that it uses a warehouse on the Mérida Cancún highway to co-ordinate the sale of foreign cement.
At a press conference this week, Moo said he did not know how many tons Arabia Cement cement have been brought into Mexico and he questioned the legality of the process.
Moo argues that despite the fact that the imported cement is cheaper than local national cement brands, it is too low in quality, it dries and cracks too fast, and it is adversely affecting the workers involved.
Moo says that he will go on lobbying the Mexican authorities for better cement quality checks and/or standards. Cost cutting should not be allowed to affect the health of those who work in construction he believes. He told the meeting that Arabia Cement charged MXN 150 (US $ 8.09) per sack.
This story first appeared on 09 Aug 2018 in El Financiero