Brazilian mining firm Vale has posted a 30.4% slump in its Q4 2022 net profit, as a result of reduced production and iron ore prices.

The miner’s net income from continuing operations in the three-month-period ending 31 December 2022 was $3.72bn, versus $5.35bn in the same period a year ago.

A $658m financial loss due to foreign exchange fluctuation and other factors dampened the quarterly performance, as against the gain of $3.16bn in the prior year.

Net operating revenues declined to $11.94bn from $13.1bn over this period.

Iron ore output fell 1% to 80.9 million metric tonnes while iron ore sales by volume dipped 0.7% year-on-year to 81.2 million tonnes.

The company’s adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) from continued operations stood at $4.62bn, compared with $4.72bn a year earlier.

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Its expanded net debt increased to $14.1bn from $9.08bn. In the October-December 2022 quarter, the firm’s capital expenditures were nearly $1.8bn.

Vale CEO Eduardo Bartolomeo said: “In 2022, we made significant progress on our strategic priorities. In safety, we are proud to have eliminated 40% of our upstream structures and removed the B3/B4 dam from the high-risk level.

“In Iron Solutions, we advanced on our path to becoming the supplier of choice for high-quality products, leveraging Vale’s unique mineral endowment and capitalising on the decarbonisation trend of the steel industry.

“On operations, we took concrete actions to deliver on our long-term growth guidance by advancing on the critical milestones we had laid out for the year.”