Brazil’s Vale (NYSE: VALE), the world’s no.1 nickel producer, is evaluating a potential spinoff of its base metals division as part of the miner’s growing interest in the electric vehicles (EV) sector.
The company, which is said to be in talks with Tesla and other EV supply chain actors about securing nickel from its Canadian operations, is in the midst of expanding its Voisey’s Bay site in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Vale’s plans include adding an underground mine to the Voisey’s Bay complex, which will produce about 40,000 tonnes of nickel-in-concentrate per year.
A recent report by market analyst Fitch Solutions indicates that demand for nickel, a key component of battery cathode chemistry in many existing and upcoming EVs, is expected to outpace both lithium and cobalt over the 2021-2030 period.
This is not the first time that Vale has looked into selling its base metals unit. In 2014, the company announced plans to sell a minority stake in the business, but it scrapped them a year later.
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