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[Federal Register: January 13, 1994]


Foreign-Trade Zones Board
[Docket No. 1-94]

Foreign-Trade Zone 104--Savannah, Georgia; Application for
Subzone, Merck & Co. Pharmaceutical Plant, Dougherty County, GA

    An application has been submitted to the Foreign-Trade Zones Board
(the Board) by the Savannah Airport Commission, grantee of FTZ 104,
requesting special-purpose subzone status for the pharmaceutical
manufacturing facility of Merck & Co., Inc., (Merck) in Dougherty
County, Georgia. The application was submitted pursuant to the
provisions of the Foreign-Trade Zones Act, as amended (19 U.S.C. 81a-
81u), and the regulations of the Board (15 CFR part 400). It was
formally filed on January 3, 1994.
    Merck is one of the world's largest pharmaceutical manufacturers
with nearly $9 billion in total sales in 1991. Its primary product
lines include: patented prescription and over-the-counter
pharmaceutical products, veterinary pharmaceuticals and agricultural
and specialty chemicals. This proposal is part of an overall company
cost reduction effort (Subzone status is being requested for seven
other Merck facilities).
    Merck's Georgia plant (800 acres, 283,910 sq. ft., 35 bldgs.) is
located at 3517 Radium Springs Road, Dougherty County, Georgia, 7 miles
southeast of Albany and some 180 miles southwest of Savannah. The
facility (310 employees) is used to produce bulk pharmaceutical
chemicals and intermediates used in Merck's human and animal health
products. Company plans call for expansion of plant facilities to
include refrigerated storage and tank farms.
    At the outset, zone procedures would be used primarily for the
production of Cefoxitin, Omeprazole, and Losartan. Zone procedures
could also include production of remoxipride hydrochloride, TRUSOPT,
and chlorsulon. Currently, foreign-sourced materials account for 10 to
20 percent of finished product value and include the following specific
ingredients: TAC (Thienylscetyl chloride), P-TSC
(Paratoluenesulfonchloride), metmereazole, pyrmethyl alcohol, imidazole
intermediate, bromo benzyl bromide, S-2-Aminomethyl-1-ethyl
pyrollidone, N-Bromo-Succinimide, hydroxy sulfone, M-Nitro
benzaldehyde. The company also may purchase from abroad other active
ingredients and items in the following general product categories:
gums, starches, waxes, vegetable extracts, mineral oils, phosphoric
acid, hydroxides, hydrazine and hydroxylamine, chlorides, phosphates,
carbonates, hydrocarbons, alcohols, phenols, ethers, epoxides, acetals,
aldehydes, ketone function compounds, mono- and polycarboxylic acids,
phosphoric esters, amine-, carboxymide, nitrile- and oxygen-function
compounds, heterocyclic compounds, sulfonamides, vitamins, hormones,
sugars, antibiotics, gelatins, enzymes, color lakes, soaps and
detergents, medicaments, and pharmaceutical products. The company may
also source from abroad insecticides, rodenticides, fungicides and
herbicides for use in agricultural/veterinary products.
    Zone procedures would exempt Merck from Customs duty payments on
foreign materials used in production for export. On domestic sales, the
company would be able to choose the duty rates that apply to the
finished products (duty-free to 23.5%, most falling in the 3.7% to
16.6% range). The duty rates on foreign-sourced items range from duty-
free to 23.5 percent, with most falling in the 3.7%-20% range. The
application indicates that the savings from zone procedures will help
improve the firm's international competitiveness.
    In accordance with the Board's regulations, a member of the FTZ
Staff has been designated examiner to investigate the application and
report to the Board.
    Public comment is invited from interested parties. Submissions
(original and 3 copies) shall be addressed to the Board's Executive
Secretary at the address below. The closing period for their receipt is
on March 14, 1994. Rebuttal comments in response to material submitted
during the foregoing period may be submitted during the subsequent 15-
day period (to March 29, 1994).
    A copy of the application and accompanying exhibits will be
available for public inspection at each of the following locations:

Port Director, Port of Savannah, U.S. Customs Service, Southeast
Region, 1 East Bay Street, Savannah, Georgia 31401.
Office of the Executive Secretary, Foreign-Trade Zones Board, U.S.
Department of Commerce, room 3716, 14th & Pennsylvania Avenue NW.,
Washington, DC 20230.

    Dated: January 3, 1994.
John J. DaPonte, Jr.,
Executive Secretary.
[FR Doc. 94-885 Filed 1-12-94; 8:45 am]