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By Andrew Willis, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Brazilian miner Vale suffered a series of financial setback’s last week that will significantly hit fourth quarter figures this year, the company said. The Rio-headquartered company settled two tax disputes at greater expense than previously budgeted and was also forced write US$4.2 billion off nickel and aluminum assets.

One dispute, dating back to 2006, relates to the calculation of taxes on services and the circulation of goods (ICMS) in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais, Brazil’s traditional mining center.

Vale agreed to pay the state . . .

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