Nota do blog: Trata-se de matéria bastante curiosa, (assim como os respectivos comentarios dos leitores) publicada recentemente em jornal de Sudbury, Canada, sobre o eventual interesse do governo brasileiro em retomar o controle sobre a Vale, conforme especulacoes da coluna de Lauro Jardim, da Revista Veja, em 01/8/2009.
Brazilian president takes aim at Vale S/A
Posted By Denis St. Pierre, The Sudbury StarAug 5, 2009
The Brazilian president's reported denunciation of huge job and investment cuts by mining giant Vale SA is being praised by the United Steelworkers union, which also decries the absence of such a position by the Canadian and Ontario governments.
"Good on Lula, bad on the Canadian government," Steelworkers District 6 director Wayne Fraser said Monday in response to news reports about Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
Lula, Brazil's first-ever working- class president, wants his government to take control of Vale SA, the country's largest newsmagazine reported on the weekend.
According to the report, Lula is upset with what he considers unnecessary job cuts and curtailing of investment plans by Vale SA's chief executive officer, Roger Agnelli.
Lula asked officials to find a legal way to ensure the government controls Vale through the investment arm of Brazil's state development bank and its state-controlled employee pension fund, the magazine Veja reported, without identifying its sources.
Valepar SA, the company that controls Vale, is owned by a combination of the employee pension fund of Banco do Brasil SA; Bradespar SA, an industrial holding company; Mitsui and Co., Japan's second-largest trading company; and BNDES Participacoes SA.
Vale declined to comment on the report, a company spokesperson told Bloomberg.com on the weekend.
Nor did Lula's press office return calls, Bloomberg said.
On Monday, the Steelworkers' Fraser said he is not surprised that Brazil's president would denounce what he characterized as Vale's attacks on workers and their communities, in various countries.
"Lula has said to all the Brazilian multinational companies, 'if you're moving into other countries, you're representing Brazil in these countries and the reputation of Brazil is at stake with everything you do,' " Fraser said.
"Agnelli's cutting thousands of jobs, not just here but in Brazil and elsewhere and that's not going over too well. It's their disrespect for their employees, be it in Brazil or Canada or South Africa, that is the issue here and at least the president of Brazil appears to think that's important.
"It would be nice to see our leaders, whether it's (Ontario Premier Dalton) McGuinty or (Prime Minister Stephen) Harper, say, 'this is enough; it's time to get back to the bargaining table.' "
About 3,100 members of Steelworkers Local 6500 in Sudbury and another 125 members of Local 6200 in Port Colborne have been on strike against Vale Inco since July 13. The workers have rejected the company's demands for changes to their bonus system, pension plan and seniority rights.
About 120 to 150 Steelworkers members, employees of Vale Inco's operations in Voisey's Bay, Nfld., went on strike Saturday.
Meanwhile, Steelworkers members from Sudbury and from Vale Inco's operations in Thompson, Man., are in Port Colborne today for a rally at the union's picket line in the southern Ontario community.
"Basically, our entire bargaining committee is here to meet with the Local 6200 strikers and local residents and politicians who support our fight," said Local 6500 president John Fera.
"It's important to make sure that everybody knows that we in Sudbury and Port Colborne and Voisey's Bay are not fighting in isolation, that we are united in this."
United Steelworkers members from Sudbury travelled to Brazil on the weekend and another local delegation is headed to the South American country next week.
The trips are part of the Steelworkers campaign against Vale's actions and the union's ongoing collaborations with other international labour groups, Fraser said.