Rio Tinto has received approval from the Brazilian National Defence Council (Conselho de Defesa Nacional) for sale of its Corumbá iron ore mine in Brazil to Vale.

Rio Tinto signed an agreement with Vale in January to sell the Corumbá mine alongside related river logistics operations in Paraguay, the Potasio Rio Colorado potash project in Argentina and the Regina exploration assets in Canada for $1.6bn.

The Corumbá portion of the deal is valued at $750m while the potash project closed on 5 February for a cash consideration of $850m.

The sale is likely to conclude shortly.

Over the last 18 months, Rio Tinto has announced asset sales of $6.6bn including the Corumbá and potash transaction.

The group’s other transactions in 2009 include interests in the Ningxia aluminium smelter in China for $125m and the US-based Jacobs Ranch coal mine for $761m.