RIO DE JANEIRO, July 16 (Reuters) – Brazil’s Vale SA achieved record iron ore and pellet production for a second quarter despite a nationwide trucker strike that paralyzed Latin America’s largest economy in May, the miner said in a filing on Monday.
Vale, the world’s top iron ore producer, said iron ore output reached 96.755 million tonnes in the period while pellet output hit 12.838 million tonnes, despite the strike over rising diesel prices.
The pickup came after a slip in iron ore production in the first quarter due to heavy rains, and as a campaign in China to cut pollution boosts demand for Vale’s top-quality iron ore.
Higher quality ore produces more steel for each tonne that is processed, and can reduce emissions as less coke is used in production. Vale said it also reached a record in sales of iron ore and pellets for a second quarter, totaling 86.5 million tonnes combined.
The northern system, comprising its Carajás and S11D mines, also reached a record for a second quarter of 46.2 million tonnes, an 11.4 percent rise over the same period last year, thanks to the S11D ramp-up.