Brazilian mining giant Vale informed that a fire broke at the mine and associated infrastructure at the Nouvelle-Calédonia (VNC) site amid local protests on Dec 15. The company had already shut operations last week due to the protests.
The extent of the damage and cause of the fire are yet to be ascertained. The processing plant, which is 7kms away from the mine, is secured under military protection, said the company.
Last week, Vale signed a sale agreement of VNC mine to Prony Resources, which triggered protests. Local leaders and other parties are against the Swiss trading company becoming a part of the consortium.
Vale has been on a quest to find a buyer for VNC for over a year. In September, the company was in talks with New Century Resources, but the deal fell through after the Australian miner said the Goro Mine has never reached its promised potential of 57,000mt.