Brazil’s mining authority has ordered Vale (NYSE:VALE) to halt operations at part of its Brucutu iron ore mine, the largest in Minas Gerais state and the company’s second biggest, behind Carajás.
The National Mining Agency (ANM) said its decision was based
on its understanding that
The Rio de Janeiro-based iron ore producer had exceeded the mineral reserve limit approved for the exploration area (mining front), in question.
“Vale understands that all the agency’s requirements to
operate the mining front were fulfilled and reported in the economic
utilization plan submitted to the agency in 2017, and will take appropriate
measures in this case,” it said in a statement.
The company, the world’s No. 1 iron ore producer, said the suspension
will not impact the production at the mine, which is part of the firm’s Minas
The miner also reaffirmed its projected sales of iron ore
and pellets of 307 million to 332 million tons for 2019.
Brucutu, which has an annual capacity of 30 million tonnes
of iron ore, has been in operations for 13 years.
Vale was forced to halt operations at the mine in February, following a court’s decision banning Vale from storing tailings in the Laranjeiras dam at Brucutu.
The verdict followed January’s tailings dam disaster at Brumadinho, which left nearly 300 people dead.