Brazil’s antitrust agency approves Kinross’ two hydro plant acquisition

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Brazil’s Administrative Council for Economic Defense has given its approval to mining company Kinross Brasil Mineracao for its US$257 million acquisition of two hydropower projects in Goais.

The agency, officially known as Conselho Administrativo de Defesa Economica (CADE), had evaluated the deal to make sure it did not violate the South American country’s antitrust laws.

The acquisition, which includes the 90-MW Barra dos Coqueiros and 65-MW Cacu, only increases Kinross’ overall capacity to about 211 MW — or less than 1% of Brazil’s national capacity — thus presenting no threat to the government.

“Kinross’ low share of the power generation market after the closure of the operation eliminates competitive concerns since it does not jeopardize the activities of other companies, whether mining firms or not,” CADE said in a statement.

Kinross Brasil Mineracao, a subsidiary of Toronto-based Kinross Gold Corp., announced its plan to buy Barra dos Coqueiros and Cacu from steel producer Gerdau SA in February.

The plants are located on the Claro River in Goais about 660 km west of Paracatu. Both have been in operation since 2010, and their operating concessions expire in 2037, five years after Paracatu mine’s life is expected to end. Barra dos Coqueiros powerhouse contains two 45-MW turbine-generator units and Cacu powerhouse contains two 32.5-MW units

In announcing the acquisition, Kinross said the deal will lower its production costs, provide attractive returns, de-risk its supply chain and provide a strategic core asset.

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Michael Harris formerly was Editor for HydroWorld.com.

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