Vale resumes work on Ontario nickel project after hiatus

Vale's (VALE) Canadian unit says it has resumed work on its Copper Cliff Deep nickel project in the Sudbury basin after development was put on hold in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, and it expects to complete a feasibility study by the end of the year.

The project is expected to cost ~$1B and could be one of the unit's lower-cost operations; the first of the three phases could start producing within the next two to three years, but a final go-ahead will depend on securing a green light from Vale's board in Brazil.

At the same time, the miner plays down expectations that it would reach a deal early this year with Glencore Xstrata (GLCNF, GLNCY) to merge their adjacent Canadian nickel projects.

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