GLOBAL miner Rio Tinto says its $19.5 billion tie-up with China’s state-owned Chinalco is an evolving deal, and is still subject to shareholder consultation, Reuters reports.
Australian politicians, meanwhile, worry the deal will give China influence over the pricing of strategic commodity, iron ore.
Rio Tinto’ chairman, Jan du Plessis, arrives in Australia this week to talk to shareholders, and discussed the China deal with major British shareholders over the past two weeks.
Rio Tinto’s iron ore chief, Sam Walsh, has meanwhile responded to concerns that Chinalco may force Rio to develop assets offshore at the expense of its Australian assets.
Walsh said the deal would see Chinalco take direct stakes in Australian iron ore assets, not offshore as some Australian commentators had suggested.