Brazilian iron ore producer Vale has shut its Teluk Rubiah iron ore blending terminal in Malaysia until 31 March to comply with a lockdown aimed at slowing the coronavirus outbreak.
The Malaysian government has asked Vale to halt operations at the terminal from 18-31 March, the company told customers today. Malaysia has imposed movement restrictions, which include shutting all non-essential businesses, until the end of the month to contain the spread of the coronavirus. The extent of the outbreak will determine whether the lockdown is extended.
Vale's iron ore terminal in Malaysia will be closed after a vessel loading is completed today.
Vale opened the terminal in Perak in 2014 to blend its northern system Carajas fines and high-silica southern system fines. It has a capacity of 30mn t/yr for incoming Valemaxes from Brazil and outgoing Capesize cargoes to China.
The impact of the outage may be minimised by Vale's shift to blending ores at Chinese ports since 2017. Vale had aimed to blend 80mn-90mn t of BRBF at overseas portside facilities to supplement around 24mn t/yr from the Malaysian terminal.
By Chris Newman
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