BHP Billiton, the world's largest mining company, has submitted an initial proposal to Brazilian regulators to develop iron ore mines in the country's Minas Gerais state. If approved, the Australian mining giant would invest $2.4 billion to the Minas Gerais government.
BHP's (BHP) foray into Brazil is noteworthy because the country is home to one of the company's fiercest rivals, Vale (VALE), the world's second-largest mining company and the top producer of iron ore.
BHP has already held prospecting rights in the area for some time, but it was too preliminary to comment on the type and size of iron ore resources and logistics and marketing involved, Platts reported, citing the company. The area, known as the Iron Ore Quadrangle, is home to a grade of iron ore used to produce pellet feed.
The project's timetable was too early to ascertain, despite a January 2017 start date filed in the letter of intent, BHP said, according to Platts. Several series of approvals and a feasibility study will be required before mining operations are allowed to begin.