The company said the PPI was created this year to support projects deemed as strategic mineral projects for Brazil.
It's a boost for the project that has attracted long-running opposition. Its construction licence remains subject to a 2017 injunction, which Belo Sun is working to address, completing the presentation of its indigenous study in October.
Belo Sun president and CEO Peter Tagliamonte said the company was pleased Volta Grande was selected for the PPI.
"It confirms the importance of sustainable, environmentally responsible and socially responsible projects and the importance these projects have to all stakeholders, including the local communities, municipalities, state and federal governments," he said.
"We look forward to cooperating and working with all stakeholders as we advance the Volta Grande gold project forward."
The company had warned in its latest MD&A, filed in November, that it anticipated additional legal claims and actions might be brought in Brazilian courts to attempt to delay the development.
It also noted a complaint made this year to the Ontario Securities Commission by a consortium of activist groups, claiming dissemination of misinformation, which the company believed was without merit.
"Despite this, the company is committed to advancing the Volta Grande gold project as a responsible and accountable mining project which will be environmentally sensitive and create broad economic and social benefits, making it a project worthy of support from all groups," it said.
A 2015 feasibility study had estimated initial capex of US$298 million for a mine producing an average annual 268,000 ounces of gold over the first 10 years.
The after-tax NPV5 was put at $665 million and IRR at 26%, using a $1,200/oz gold price.
The company had C$25.4 million in cash and equivalents at September 30.
Its shares (TSXV: BSX) gained 3.3% on Friday to close at 63c, near the middle of a one-year range, valuing it at $286.7 million (US$223.6 millon).