Vale released, on this date its financial statements for 1Q23.
“Our Q1 results showed stronger iron ore production, supported by S11D improved performance, thanks to our truckless system improved reliability and the new crushers. Despite the weather-related loading restrictions that impacted our sales, we remain confident in our ability to achieve our 2023 goals. Our Energy Transition Metals results were solid, with continued ramp up at Salobo III, resulting in a strong performance in copper. In Sudbury, our mines had their highest production rates since 2017. While the mining industry faces inflationary pressure, we remain focused on cost efficiency and productivity gains. We are also making progress in managing our tailings dams. In April, two geotechnical structures received their declaration of stability, which led to removing their emergency level. Since 2022, we have successfully revoked the emergency level protocols for 10 structures. We remain strongly committed to building a safer and more reliable company while delivering value to our shareholders”, commented Eduardo Bartolomeo, Chief Executive Officer
• Proforma adjusted EBITDA from continued operations of US$ 3.7 billion in Q1, down US$ 2.7 billion y/y, mainly reflecting (i) lower realized prices of iron ore fines and pellets, (ii) lower sales of iron ore fines and (iii) higher costs.
• Free Cash Flow from Operations of US$ 2.3 billion, representing 62% EBITDA to cash-conversion versus 19% in 1Q22, largely explained by (i) the strong cash collection from 4Q22 sales and (ii) seasonally higher income tax paid in 1Q22.
Disciplined capital allocation
• Capital expenditures of US$ 1.1 billion in Q1, including growth and sustaining investments, in line y/y.
• Gross debt and leases of US$ 13.0 billion as of March 31, 2023, slightly higher q/q, mainly due to US$ 300 million debt issued as part of Vale’s liability management.
• Expanded Net Debt of US$ 14.4 billion as of March 31, 2023, in line q/q and within the targeted leverage of US$ 10-20 billion.
Value creation and distribution
• US$ 1.8 billion in dividends paid in March 2023
• Overall, the 3rd buyback program is 47% complete, with a disbursement of US$ 3.7 billion to repurchase 233.7 million shares.
Focusing and strengthening the core
• Progressing in the electric vehicles value chain:
o PTVI and China’s Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt Co. signed a definitive agreement with global automaker Ford Motor Co. for the development of the Pomalaa project in Indonesia.
o In February, we inaugurated the construction of the Morowali project.
• Delivering iron solutions:
o Shipment of the first briquettes cargo for international tests in blast furnace in April.
o Emergency plan for Torto dam was approved in March, and our expectation is to obtain the operating license by the end of Q2.
• Advancing the project pipeline:
o Both lines at Salobo III plant already in operation, and successfully ramping up.
o Commissioning of Gelado project has continued to progress, using 100% electric dredges.
• Responsible divestment of non-core assets is concluded with the conclusion of the sale of Companhia Siderúrgica do Pecém (CSP).
Promoting sustainable mining
• Two geotechnical structures received declaration of stability condition in April, having their emergency level condition removed.
• Vale’s ESG Risk Rating, assessed by Sustainalytics, was upgraded from 39.1 to 35.3, indicating further recognition of our efforts in building a safer and more sustainable company.
• Agreement with United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to terminate a lawsuit filed by the SEC against the Company was signed in March 2023.