Virus could stall progress on Rio Tinto’s Mongolia project

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 27 : 17-Mar-20

Rio Tinto has advised that work on the multi-billion dollar underground expansion of its Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia is being slowed as a consequence of efforts to limit the spread of the coronavirus. Rio had previously reported in February that copper deliveries from the mine to buyers in China were being delayed due to border control measures aimed at tackling the spread of the virus. The underground expansion of the Oyu Tolgoi mine has been the subject of ongoing delays.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO

Virus slows Rio Tinto copper sales

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 17 : 13-Feb-20

The Oyu Tolgoi copper mine is located in the Khanbogd province, where the Mongolian government has declared a state of emergency due to the coronavirus. Rio Tinto has advised that Mongolia’s efforts to contain the virus’s spread will result in shipments of copper concentrate being delayed. The mine’s output is usually shipped across the border to China via trucks. BHP also recently advised that its copper shipments to China may be delayed, while OZ Mineral has indicated that it has not yet been impacted by the coronavirus outbreak.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, OZ MINERALS LIMITED – ASX OZL

Rio Tinto’s hold on Oyu Tolgoi deal firms with Mongolian court win

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 21 : 9-Dec-19

Rio Tinto and the Mongolian government entered into an agreement in 2015 regarding a $US5.3 billion expansion of the Oyu Tolgoi mine. The Mongolian First Administrative Court upheld a claim in November that proper parliamentary process may not have been followed when striking the agreement. However, a statement issued on the Court’s official website on 5 December indicated that the ruling is not likely to impact on the 2015 agreement.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO

Rio wears cash drain to bet on copper

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 19 : 5-Dec-19

Rio Tinto will extend the life of its Kennecott copper mine in the US until at least 2032 after unveiling plans to spend $US1.5bn on a new pit wall cutback. Rio Tinto is also widely tipped to spend some $US1.5bn on the expansion of its Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia in 2020. The capital investment programs have raised doubts as to whether Rio Tinto’s copper and diamonds division will generate free cash flow in 2020. Copper and diamonds have accounted for the bulk of its expenditure on exploration in 2019.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP

Rio knew of project woes, UK court told

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 17 & 20 : 13-Nov-19

Rio Tinto advised earlier in 2019 that the underground expansion of the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia could cost up to $US1.9 billion more than previously forecast. It also indicated that the expansion project may take up to 30 months longer than expected to complete. However, a former general manager at the mine has claimed that he raised concerns about a blowout in the cost and completion date for the expansion in July 2018. He has filed an unfair dismissal claim against Rio Tinto in the UK.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, GREAT BRITAIN. EMPLOYMENT TRIBUNAL, TURQUOISE HILL RESOURCES LIMITED

Rio Tinto prepares for Mongolian parliament review

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 18 : 17-Sep-19

Mongolian MPs are due to commence debate on the legal agreement that supports the operation of the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in the week ending 19 September. The agreement in question is the 2009 Oyu Tolgoi Investment Agreement, which gives the Mongolian government a 34 per cent stake in the mine, which is regarded as one of Rio Tinto’s most significant assets. Production of gold and copper from Oyu Tolgoi commenced in 2013, while Rio is in the process of spending between $US6 billion ($8.7 billion) and $US8 billion on an underground expansion of the mine.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO

Lawyers probe Rio’s Mongolian maelstrom

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 18 : 19-Jul-19

US law firm Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro has advised that it will investigate the market disclosures of Rio Tinto and Turquoise Hill Resources with regard to the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia. The market capitalisation of Turquoise Hill recently fell sharply after Rio Tinto warned of a blowout in the cost of an underground expansion of the mine. Law firm Baker & McKenzie has previously flagged plans to scrutinise Rio Tinto’s disclosures regarding the project.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, TURQUOISE HILL RESOURCES LIMITED, OYU TOLGOI LLC, HAGENS BERMAN SOBOL SHAPIRO LLP, BAKER AND McKENZIE

Rio Tinto may cut rates on Mongolia loans in compromise move

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 16 : 15-Oct-18

Recent media reports in Mongolia have suggested that Rio Tinto could be prepared to reduce the interest rates on the loans it provides to the government-owned company that has a 34 per cent stake in the Oyu Tolgo copper mine. According to the reports, Mongolian MP Gombojavyn Zandanshatar has indicated that Rio Tinto will reduce its loan interest rates as part of negotiations with the government regarding their agreement to expand the mine. The government is dependent on loans from Rio Tinto to finance its share of construction costs.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, OYU TOLGOI LLC, TURQUOISE HILL RESOURCES LIMITED, TORONTO STOCK EXCHANGE, BHP BILLITON LIMITED – ASX BHP, OZ MINERALS LIMITED – ASX OZL

Rio warns Oyu Tolgoi a test case for investment in Mongolia

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 15 : 23-May-18

Rio Tinto executive Arnaud Soirat says the Mongolian Government must not seek changes to the 2009 investment agreement regarding the Oyu Tolgoi mine. He says the international business community will view the $US5.3bn expansion of the copper and gold mine as a "test case" for future investment in Mongolia. The nation’s deputy mining minister, Zagdjav Deleg, stated in March that the government could potentially move to full ownership of the mine if the investment agreement was found to have been secured as a result of corruption.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, OYU TOLGOI LLC, MONGOLIA. MINISTRY OF MINERAL RESOURCES AND ENERGY, TURQUOISE HILL RESOURCES LIMITED

Bribery probe clouds Rio’s Mongolia deal

Original article by Matt Chambers
The Australian – Page: 21 : 23-Mar-18

Swiss and Mongolian authorities are investigating the origins of a $US10 million ($A12.9 million) payment into a Swiss bank account. The account belongs to former Mongolian finance minister Bayartsogt Sangajav. Bayartsogt has denied suggestions that the payment was linked to Rio Tinto’s Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold project, although Swiss authorities have stated that they are investigating whether Rio or any of its business units had a role in the deposit. Rio has indicated that it has had no contact from Swiss authorities on the matter.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, IVANHOE MINES LIMITED, TURQUOISE HILL RESOURCES LIMITED, SWITZERLAND. OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, WHITEHAVEN COAL LIMITED – ASX WHC