(Alliance News) - BHP Group Ltd said on on Monday it and its joint-venture partner Brazilian iron ore miner Vale SA have made an "indicative" USD25 billion offer to settle claims arising from the 2015 Fundao dam disaster.

The tailings dam was operated by Samarco Mineracao SA, a 50-50 joint venture of BHP and Brazilian iron ore miner Vale SA.

BHP said on Monday negotiations between the joint venture and Brazilian government were ongoing and no final agreement had been reached on the settlement amount or terms.

Late in January, the Melbourne-based miner noted media reports that the Federal Court of Brazil had ordered BHP and its partners to pay USD9.7 billion in "collective moral damages" arising from the Fundao trailings dam failure.

These collective moral damages were one of the categories of claims Brazilian prosecutors sought in the BRL155 billion, or around USD43 billion lawsuit.

BHP said on Monday it had made provision of USD6.5 billion for the Samarco dam failure as at December 31, 2023.

"As part of the settlement negotiations, BHP Brasil, Samarco and Vale have submitted a non-binding, indicative settlement proposal which is within BHP Brasil's provision for the Samarco dam failure," BHP said on Monday, responding to media speculation.

This proposal is for a total financial value of about BRL127 billion, or around USD25.7 billion, with BHP Brasil and Vale contributing 50% each, it said.

Shares in BHP were down 1.3% at 2,221.00 pence each in London on Monday afternoon, and they lost 1.2% at ZAR520.40 each in Johannesburg.

By Artwell Dlamini, Alliance News reporter

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