RIO DE JANEIRO, Sept 22 (Reuters) - ThyssenKrupp AG said on Thursday it had met all the requirements to receive a final operating license for its Cia Siderurgica do Atlantico (CSA) mill in Rio de Janeiro despite a court injunction this week blocking the issuance of the permit.
On Tuesday, judge Natascha Maculan Adum Dazzi of the Rio de Janeiro-state Justice Tribunal prohibited the state government from renewing the CSA steelmill’s operating license, prosecutors said on Wednesday.
The injunction was issued to give courts time to evaluate other legal requests seeking new studies on the environmental and health impact before the license is issued, said prosecutors, who requested the injunction in July.
“Thyssen Krupp fully complies with the license conditions established by the state environmental authorities,” ThyssenKrupp said. “State environmental protection agency INEA is ready to approve the operating license as soon as there is a final decision by the courts.”
CSA is also in full compliance with a 2012 adjustment of conduct accord negotiated with the government to reduce pollution complaints with locals.
The 5-million-tonne a year steel-slab mill in the suburbs of Rio de Janeiro has relied on pre-operating licenses since it opened in 2010.
Cia Siderurgica do Atlantico has been plagued by problems since it was built. Planned during Brazil’s commodities boom, it opened after construction problems and delays, only to be hit by a global glut of steel.
People were angered by dust, soot, and particulate problems that plagued the mill in its early years and led to fines and court-ordered shutdowns. Residents complained of problems caused by the pollution, from respiratory woes to contaminated water.
The 5.3-billion-euro ($5.9-billion) mill, at the time Brazil’s biggest foreign investment ever, became a loss maker for ThyssenKrupp, which tried to sell it, but received no acceptable offers.
This year, Vale SA, which owned 27 percent of the mill and had a long-term iron-ore supply contract, sold its stake to ThyssenKrupp for a “token” amount. ($1=$1.1191 euros) (Reporting by Jeb Blount; Editing by Clarence Fernandez and Chizu Nomiyama)