Anglo American’s Brazil iron ore output on pause; shipments ‘not affected’

Iron ore output at Anglo American’s Brazilian Minas-Rio operation is still halted after a slurry pipeline rupture, but shipments are not expected to be affected, it told Metal Bulletin on Friday March 16.

“So far, there is no impact forecast,” the miner said. “There are around 700,000 tonnes of iron ore stocked, which is a sufficient volume to meet the shipping schedule of the next vessels.”

The company stopped iron ore production at Minas-Rio on March 12, after a slurry pipeline designed to transport material from the mining site – in Minas Gerais state – to the port terminal – in Rio de Janeiro state – ruptured.

Production will remain halted until the repair in the pipeline duct is complete and the firm has full security to resume operations, Anglo American said.

“At this moment, all efforts are being concentrated on mitigating the disturbance to the population and the removal of material from the Santo Antônio do Grama stream,” the company said.

“[The] evaluation of eventual financial losses will be made later,” it added.

In 2017, Anglo American’s Minas-Rio iron ore output totaled 16.8 million tonnes, up 4% on an annual basis. This is just shy of its current 17 million-tonnes-per-year operating capacity, which was recently licensed to expand to 26.5 million tpy by Minas Gerais’ mining chamber, CMI, on Friday January 26.

Metal Bulletin’s 62% Fe Iron Ore Index was $69.84 per tonne, cfr Qingdao, on Friday, down $2.27 per tonne on a daily basis.