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Imports for consumption-Continued. ZINC ORE, ZINC BEARING, INCLUDING CALA MINE, CONTAINING LESS THAN 10 PER
CENT OF ZINC.
ZINC ORE, ZINC BEARING, INCLUDING CALAMINE, CONTAINING 10 AND LESS THAN 20
PER CENT OF ZINC.
ZINC ORE, ZINC BEARING, INCLUDING CALAMINE, CONTAINING 20 AND LESS THAN 25
PER CENT OF ZINC.
ZINC ORE, ZINC BEARING, INCLUDING CALAMINE, CONTAINING 25 PER CENT OR MORE
ZINC ORE, ZINC BEARÍNG, INCLUDING CALAMÍNE, ON THE ZINC CONTAINED
10 per cent.
2 13,975. 46 311, 409,935
2 15, 716 312,613, 734
$162,991.00 $16, 299.10
291, 114.00 29, 111.40 3,376,166.00 337, 616.60 2,185, 901.00 218, 590. 10
2 89, 611 381,779, 564
2 92, 636 3 94, 180, 657
2 33, 447 331,822, 890
580, 778.00 58,077.80
1 Aug. 6, 1909, to June 30, 1910, under act of 1909.
4 July 1, to Oct. 3, 1913, under act of 1909.
Imports for consumption-Continued.
ZINC OR SPELTER: ZINC FOR SMELTING OR REFINING IN BONDED WORKS FOR
EXPORT (SEC. IV, NI), ORE, ZINC-BEARING, INCLUDING CALAMINE.
Mexico is the most important country of origin of ore imported into the United States. The imports fluctuate greatly. They were generally increasing until the Mexican political disturbances in 1911. The imports in 1909 were abnormally large owing to the imminence of tariff legislation in the United States. The falling off in the following year can not be attributed entirely to the establishment of a tariff, since the low price of the metal probably discouraged mining, most of the ore shipped was delivered under previous contract. The Diaz administration made certain changes in Mexican freight rates, whereby the rate from the zinc districts of northern Mexico to the United States border was increased $1.08 per ton, while the rate to Gulf ports was lowered $0.27 per ton. The difference in freight rates plus the new import duty of the United States led to the consignment of several experimental lots of Mexican ore to European smelters early in 1910. No satisfactory arrangements were made for continuous shipments on a large scale, and the insurrection in 1911 and the general continued political uncertainty thereafter, first in Mexico and later in Europe, has blocked any further diversion of Mexican ore from American smelters. As regards the importations from Canada, other factors besides the tariff changes have dominated the situation. As in the case of Mexico, the decided drop in imports in 1910 can be partially, at least, attributed to excessive imports in the preceding year while legislation was pending and to the low price of spelter. The continued slump in 1911 in the face of prevailing high prices was due to serious forest fires that destroyed concentrating plants and paralyzed transportation in British Columbia.
The trend of importations of zinc ore in recent years is best shown by the following condensed table. These statistics are for calendar
The values and weights are based on consular invoice, no liquidation corrections being applied to the dutiable imports, and are therefore only a close approximation to the true weights and values. All imports of zinc ore prior to 1912 came from Canada or Mexico, but the totals in the following table include imports from other countries since that year.
Imports of zinc ore into the United States by countries, 1904–1918.
The foregoing figures showing imports of zinc ore in 1910 do not include 10,431 short tons of ore, carrying 2,645,111 pounds of zinc (an average of less than 13 per cent) as an accessory constituent, and which was lost in smelting the ore. Similarly the 1911 figures omit 25,769 tons of other ore, carrying 6,283,437 pounds of zinc, and those for 1912 are exclusive of 18,245 tons of other ore, carrying 4,862,508 pounds of zinc unrecoverable by present metallurgical practice.
Before the war Chile was the only other country from which zinc ore was received. Imports from that country continued for but three years, 1911–1913, inclusive. The maximum amount was in 1912 1 when 23,000 tons of ore "containing, however, only about 6,500,000 pounds of zinc were received. This ore was classed as
'copper-zinc” ore by the Chilean Government when exported. How much, if any, of this zinc was recovered is not known. The importation is not significant.
The cutting off of the great German and Belgium smelteries during the period of the war diverted to the United States ore from several countries that had formerly shipped to European smelteries. The most important of these is Australia. In 1915,4 25,461 tons of concentrates were received, and in 1916,1 116,668 tons containing nearly 113,500,000 pounds of zinc were imported into the United Statesa greater amount from this one country than the total imports from all countries combined in any previous year except that of 1915.' Even in 1915, the total imports of zinc ore were only slightly more than the receipts from Australia alone in 1916.
In 1917 the abnormal rise in ocean freights cut the imports from this far off country to less than one-half, and in 1918 the imports were still further reduced, consisting of only the last deliveries under contracts let in 1916.2
i Fiscal year. 2 The Australian situation is contained in the report on spelter in the files of the Tariff Commission.
The largest annual revenue collected on imports of zinc ore was $371,927.23 in 1910, the first fiscal year under the act of 1909 and prior to the disturbances in Mexico. The second largest revenue was derived in 1916, amounting to $308,084.55 after deducting the drawback paid in that year. The total quantity of zinc imported in the form of ore in that year was more than 100,000 tons, 60 per cent of which was imported free of duty for treatment in bonded
works. In the following year a somewhat larger quantity was imported as dutiable and the quantity treated in bond increased more than 50 per cent. Only $58,077.80 was collected in duties on zinc ore in the fiscal year 1918, while the drawbacks paid were the largest on record, amounting to $101,680.10.
The average revenue collected on the zinc contents of ore imported in the nine years ended June 30, 1918, was $146,577.63 annually after deducting the drawbacks paid. The extreme fluctuations in the quantity of foreign ore imported for ultimate consumption during that period, however, make this average worthless for the purpose of estimating probable future revenue. The most important factor, , aside from market conditions, is the Mexican situation, which involves large potential tonnage. The following table illustrates the fluctuations under the acts of 1909 and 1913 and is presented without further comment:
Consumption of foreign ore-Revenue.
St. Louis is the main zinc market, and St. Louis quotations are invariably used as a basis in the purchase of zinc ore in the United States. Spelter is also marketed in New York, but the New York quotations for spelter are not a factor in ore salés.
In the Mississippi Valley region the smelting companies buy their ore in the open market direct from the producers, generally in the producers' bins; that is, the representative of the smelter looks the lot of ore over, occasionally samples it, and then tells the producer what he is willing to give for the lot. The prices offered are based on the spelter market, but are also affected by local competition among the various buyers in the district. In times of ore stringency, a producer will frequently invite several buyers to bid on his ore,