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Bureau of Mines / Minerals yearbook area reports: international 1972
Year 1972, Volume 3 (1972)

Wessel, F. W.
Brazil,   pp. 155-169 ff. PDF (1.6 MB)

Page 164

Table 3.—Brazil: Imports of mineral conunodities—Continued 
(Metric tons unless otherwise specified) 
Principal sources, 1971 
Mineral tar and other hydrocarbon-based chemicals                      
' Revised. 
 ' Less than 3~ unit. 
 2 Excludes jewelry and other ornamental items. 
 ' Includes some material not identified by commodity in source, and commodities
not listed separately in table. 
 Aluminum.—Production of bauxite, alumina, and primary aluminum increased
12.5%, 15.1%, and 20.8%, respectively, in 
1972. The increasing efficiency of the industry was demonstrated by its consumption
of 6.22 tons of bauxi-te per ton of metal, down from 6.68 tons in 1971 and
8.74 tons in 1970, and its alumina-to-metal ratio of L97, down from 2.07
in 1971. 
Four smelters operated during the year. Cia. Brasileira de AlumInio (CBA),
a Votorantim-group company, produced aluminum at -Sorocaba; Cia. Mineira
de AlumInio produced primary metal at Pocos de Caldas; and Cia. AlumInio
Minas Gerais produced aluminum at both Saramenha and Aratd; the latter plant
used alumina produced at Saramenha. With developmen-t of additional bauxite
reserves, several smelters were planning expansion, notably CBA, which has
as its goal a 70,000-ton capacity by 1977 and 100,000 tons by 1980. 
 The numerous teams exploring for bauxite in the lower Amazon Basin suspended
activities about midyear as a result of a slump in world demand for aluminum;
this condition was regarded as temporary. Prominent in the field was MineraçAo
Rio do Norte, S.A., which has been examining deposits in Pará, north
of the Amazon River and west of the Trombetas River, and has measured 130
million tons of alumina contained in bauxite. An annual production of 2 million
tons of bauxite, mostly for export, is targeted for 1975. The company, originally
a subsidiary of Alcan Aluminium, Ltd., transferred some of its holdings to
the Cia. Vale do Rio Doce (CVRD). Several companies were prospecting in the
Paragominas area 
of Pará, south of -the Amazon River and east of the Belem—B-rasilia
 Chromite.—A newly formed Japanese company, Brazilian Chrome Resources
Development Co., joined with Cia. de Ferro-Ligas da Bahia, S.A. (FERBAiSA),
to expand Brazilian production of chromite and ferrochromium. Exploration
increased reserves at Campo Formoso, Bahia, and from this deposit the Pedrinhas
mine of FERBASA supplied that company's ferroalby furnaces and shipped concentrates
to Salvador for export to Japan. Annual production of 100,000 tons of chromite
and 5,000 tons of low-carbon ferrochromium, in addition to the present 10,000
tons of high-carbon alloy, was sought; however, ore reserves may support
only a more limited expansion. 
 Columbium.—Late in the year Cia. Brasileira de Metalurgia é
MineraçAo (CBMM) and Cia. AgrIcola de Minas Gerais (CAMIG), a state-government
corporation, formed a new company, Cia. Mineradora do Pirocboro de Araxá
(COMPIRA), to exploit their adjoining m-ining concessions. The concessions
were leased to COMPIRA for a nominal fee. COMPIRA will sell its ore to CBMM
at cost plus 10%, and CB-MM will process the ores and market the products.
 Copper.—Mine production of copper declined to 4,300 tons, a decrease
of 16%. Cia. Brasileira do Cobre was the sole producer. 
 Copper has been known at Caraiba, BahIa, since 1870. The most recent resource
estimate is 40 million tons of ore at a grade of not quite 1%; gold and silver
are present and can be concentrated with the copper. Caraiba Metais was formed
to conduct additional drilling and to start de 

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