* Vale CEO says China posting record steel production
* China may produce 850 mln tonnes of steel in 2014, CEO says
* Ferreira says Guinea has not informed Vale of mine rights loss (Adds quotes, details)
BRASILIA, April 16 (Reuters) - Vale SA is not concerned about an economic slowdown in China, the mining company’s top iron ore market, because Chinese steel output is setting records, Chief Executive Officer Murilo Ferreia told Reuters on Wednesday.
China’s economic indicators remain strong, Ferreira said after data on Wednesday showed China’s economy grew at its slowest pace in 18 months at the start of 2014.
“We are celebrating the production of 70 million tons of steel [in China last month], an all-time record,” he said after an event in Brazil’s capital Brasilia. “I‘m still very confident.”
China, the world’s top steelmaker, produced 70.25 million tonnes of steel in March, 2.2 percent more than in the same month a year ago, the country’s National Bureau of Statistics reported on Wednesday.
Ferreira said he expects China to produce between 820 million and 850 million tonnes of steel in 2014, as much as 9 percent more than the 779 million tonnes produced in 2013.
Vale preferred shares, the company’s most-traded class of stock, rose 0.3 percent to 27.94 reais in afternoon trading in Sao Paulo. On Tuesday it fell 4.6 percent on concern China’s growth is slowing.
Ferreira also said that Vale has not received any formal communication from officials in Guinea since a government committee recommended on April 9 that Vale and its partner BSG Resources (BSGR) be stripped of two iron ore concessions in the West African nation.
In its report, the committee recommended Guinea withdraw the mining permit held by VBG, a joint venture between BSGR and Vale, in the giant Simandou and nearby Zogota iron ore deposits on concern that the rights were originally acquired by BSGR in a corrupt manner.
The report did not allege any corrupt activity on Vale’s part. Vale has said it is cooperating with investigators in the United States and Guinea who are looking into the BSGR corruption allegations. (Reporting by Jeferson Ribeiro; Writing by Caroline Stauffer; editing by Andrew Hay)