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Vale terminal inks iron ore deal with Qingdao port

Vale terminal inks iron ore deal with Qingdao port
Vale’s port terminal Ponta da Madeira has signed a cooperation agreement with China’s Qingdao port for an increase in the handling of iron ore between the terminals.

Brazil’s Vale announced on Wednesday that the agreement “paves the way for a growth of iron ore trade between Brazilian port terminal and Chinese port.”

The mining giant added that the cooperation will also intensify the exchange of information, best practices and studies of common interest, as well as mutual benefits in relation to trade and promotion of maritime routes between the two countries.

Ponta da Madeira terminal in northeastern Brazil is a main port to ship production from Vale’s Carajas mines, which is expected to produce around 120m tonnes of products this year.

The Brazilian terminal has shipped around 105m tonnes of iron ore in 2013 out of a total of 112m tonnes in products shipped.

The port of Qingdao, located on the east coast of northern China, receives more than 100m tonnes of iron ore a year, according to Vale.

Vale is building the world’s largest ore carriers, dubbed valemaxes at 400,000 dwt in capacity, to serve the Brazil-China iron ore trades. The ultra-large bulkers, however, were denied entry into Chinese ports on safety grounds, with the China Shipowners Association leading the objection and criticising Vale for trying to monopolise the iron ore trade.

The latest cooperation agreement with Qingdao port could possibly pave the way for Vale to operate their valemaxes in Chinese ports eventually.

Vale has recently inked deals with Chinese shipowners Cosco and China Merchants to sell the VLOCs to them and charter the ships back on long term contracts.