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LatinNews Daily - 05 February 2021

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In brief: Brazil’s Vale to pay billion-dollar settlement for dam collapse

* Brazilian mining giant Vale has reached an agreement to pay R$37.69bn (US$7bn) in compensation to the state of Minas Gerais for the damage caused by the collapse two years ago of a tailings dam in Brumadinho, which killed over 270 people. The settlement follows months of negotiations between the Minas Gerais state authorities and the mining company, mediated by the Minas Gerais court of justice. Although it is reportedly lower than initially hoped for by the Minas Gerais government, the settlement has been described as the largest reparation of its kind in Latin America by Minas Gerais Governor Romeu Zema. The settlement will go towards income transfers to the affected population, projects for the affected communities, environmental reparations, and state public works. “Vale is committed to fully repair and compensate the damage caused by the tragedy in Brumadinho”, Vale CEO, Eduardo Bartolomeo, said. The deal does not impact legal proceedings that Vale and its executives face for their responsibility in the dam's collapse, which include homicide charges.