October 31, 2017 / 12:31 AM / a year ago

BHP, Vale get short extension on Brazil mine disaster settlement

SYDNEY (Reuters) - BHP Billiton (BHP.AX) (BLT.L) and Vale SA VALE5.SA have been granted an extension until Nov. 16 by a Brazilian court to negotiate a settlement on a $47 billion (35.59 billion pounds) claim stemming from the Samarco mine disaster in 2015, BHP said on Tuesday.

FILE PHOTO - Debris of a house is pictured at Bento Rodrigues district, which was covered with mud after a dam owned by Vale SA and BHP Billiton Ltd burst in Mariana, Brazil, November 6, 2015. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes

Brazilian federal prosecutors in May last year served the joint partners in the Samarco iron ore mine with a 155 billion Brazilian real claim to pay for the social, environmental and economic costs of cleaning up the country’s worst environmental disaster.

A settlement date of Oct. 30 was set by the court earlier this year after the parties failed to reach an agreement by a previous deadline of June 30.

Nineteen people died and nearby towns were flooded after a dam designed to hold back mine waste burst on Nov. 5, 2015.

Reporting by James Regan; Editing by Sam Holmes

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