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Brazilian Government denies any intention to nationalize mineral deposits

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Brazilian Government denies any intention to nationalize mineral deposits PR Newswire SAO PAULO, July 5, 2012 SAO PAULO, July 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Brazilian government has no plans to intervene directly in the mining sector via a state company or to nationalize

Ajouté le : 15 juillet 2012
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Brazilian Government denies any intention to
nationalize mineral deposits
PR Newswire
SAO PAULO, July 5, 2012
SAO PAULO
,
July 5, 2012
/PRNewswire/ -- The Brazilian government has no
plans to intervene directly in the mining sector via a state company or to
nationalize mineral deposits that might be deemed strategic to national
interest, a senior government official in an exclusive interview published
Wednesday by
Brasil Mineral
, the country's leading trade magazine for the
sector.
"We want to make it very clear that the Brazilian Geological Survey (CPRM) will
not begin to prospect for or mine minerals as if it were a state-owned
company," said Claudio Scliar, geology, mining and mineral processing
secretary at the Mines and Energy Ministry, rebutting recent press reports. "We
have never considered nationalizing the sector, in the sense of creating (state-
owned) companies."
What the government is looking at, Scliar said, is changing the existing system
in ways that would facilitate the operations of companies wanting to invest in
mineral production. The government will seek to move from the existing
system, under which mineral rights in a specific area are awarded to whoever
registers the claim first, to a system whereby interested companies will need to
bid for areas at an auction to be conducted by a planned regulatory agency.
Scliar said that the new rules would apply to all minerals with the exception of
those destined for civil construction. These rights will continue to be awarded,
and the responsibility for awarding production licenses may be delegated by
the federal government to other levels of government.
Until the government's new proposal is approved there will be a transition
phase during which mineral rights will continue to be issued in the current
manner, but only after much more rigorous analysis. "We will not simply carry
on stamping and signing (requests)," Scliar said.
Companies that depend on mineral rights to continue existing projects have
absolutely no cause to worry, he said: "The last thing the government plans
doing is getting in the way of companies that want to produce. But speculation
in mineral areas will no longer be tolerated; we want to do away with the
culture of trading in mineral rights, and indeed we see this as a way of
encouraging investment."
There is currently an average delay of 10 years from the granting of
prospecting rights to a request for production rights, he said.
Scliar said that under the government's proposals, the question of strategic
minerals – principally metallic minerals – would be addressed by a yet-to-be-
created National Minerals Policy Council (CNPM).
Contact information:
Roseli Rodrigues,
+55-11-3811-2825,
roseli@mla.com.br
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