Brazil: pellet concentration unit

Brazilian iron pellet maker Samarco, a 50:50 JV between Vale and BHP Billiton, is considering building a new pellet concentration unit in the city of Germano in Minas Gerais state and an 8.25 million tns/yr iron ore pellet plant in Ponta Ubu in Espirito Santo state. Also included in the company’s expansion project is a new pipeline connecting Minas Gerais and coastal Espírito Santo state. As part of the new undertakings, Samarco’s port terminal would have its capacity raised to about 30.5 million tns/yr from 22 million tns/yr. The new plant will stand next to the 3 existing pellet facilities. Samarco has already applied for environmental permits. The venture is expecting to receive installation licenses in October 2010. The expansions are pending shareholder approval. Construction would start 36 months following a stockholder green light.
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