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Vale to spend US$253mn on technology centers


Brazilian mining giant Vale (NYSE: VALE) will invest at least 400mn reais (US$253mn) to build three technological centers in different parts of the country, according to Luiz Mello, the director of the initiative.

Construction of a 162m-real center in Ouro Preto (Minas Gerais state) is expected to be ready in 2013. Other agreements have been signed to build two more units by 2014, in São José dos Campos (São Paulo) and in Belém (Pará), news service Agência Estado reported.

The centers will be dedicated to research on low carbon initiatives and sustainable development.

“People say mining is this and mining is that but mining is pure technology,” CEO Roger Agnelli said at a ceremony to sign the land permit for the Ouro Preto center.

Agnelli will be replaced as CEO by Murilo Pinto de Oliveira Ferreira on May 22.

Vale’s 2010 net earnings skyrocketed 227% to US$17.3bn. Operating revenues nearly doubled to US$46.5bn from US$23.9bn in 2009 on higher volumes and prices. Iron ore sales increased 11.4% to 255Mt from 229Mt in 2009.

The Rio de Janeiro-based miner is the world’s largest iron ore producer and exporter.


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