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Industry must live with tax: Rio Tinto

The Daily Mercury reports Rio Tinto executive director Sam Walsh says the mining industry has to live with the new resources tax as the best deal that could be done with the current government. The final tax rate had been reduced from 40% to an effective 22.5% rate in the minerals resource rent tax (MRRT), he told the meeting organised by the American Chamber of Commerce in Australia. At a breakfast meeting in Perth on Tuesday, Mr Walsh defended his company's role in closing the tax deal, saying junior miners left out of final negotiations now have a chance to have their concerns heard. On top of the MMRT, Australian miners also have to contend with a proposed carbon tax set to kick in mid-2012.

Big miners needn’t worry about higher royalties in Peru, juniors should

Speaking in Arequipa at Peru's premier mining conference industry executives said on Friday a drive by Peru's leftist president to raise mining royalties should not derail multibillion-dollar investments, but added that the viability of smaller, less efficient operations will be affected. Peru's Buenaventura and US-based Newmont said their $4.8 billion Conga mine, the most expensive mine in Peru's history, was on track to come on line in 2014 while others including Barrick Gold, Xstrata, Anglo American and Gold Fields reiterated their commitment to the country.

Rio Tinto plans to sell ‘a lot’ Of Oyu Tolgoi output to China

Rio Tinto PLC (RIO) plans to sell "a lot" of the output from the Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold project in Mongolia to China, and is in discussions with smelters in China, Rio Tinto's U.S. Copper Chief Financial Officer said Friday at an industry event."Talks are still underway, and there's no definite plan right now," Kay Priestly told a Metal Bulletin conference in China. With the Oyu Tolgoi mine strategically located close to China where demand is high, so "it's certainly our plan to transport a lot of the products to China," Priestly added.

Anvil Mining reins in $1 billion takeover rumours

Anvil Mining (TSE:AVM), a copper miner based in the central Africa, tamped down speculation that it may be acquired for $1 billion. Australian Finance Review reported that it was in serious discussion with a Chinese firm about some sort of business tie up. Last month, Anvil announced that it started a strategic review process and the company had formed a special transaction committee to ". . . review and consider the value maximizing alternatives available to the Corporation. BMO Capital Markets has been retained to assist in this regard," said the company in a statement.

Freeport braces for month-long strike

For the second time this year workers have downed tools at one of the world's largest copper and gold mines. The Sydney Morning Herald is reporting thousands of workers at Freeport-McMoran's gold and copper mine in eastern Indonesia have begun a month-long strike over a wage dispute: Union spokesman Juli Parorongan said roughly 90 per cent of the Papua mine's 12,000 workers were taking part in the action, which began on Thursday.

Indian firms eye $6 billion Afghan iron ore contract

As the United States and its allies look back on a weekend of memorials and tributes to the nearly 3,000 victims of 9/11, the country that was struck in retaliation for the 2001 attack on America could become a hotbed of mining. The National reports that Indian firms are bidding billions of dollars for a contract to mine iron ore in a central district of Afghanistan: "A consortium led by the state-run Steel Authority of India (SAIL) could invest up to US$6 billion (Dh22bn) in the mine, railroads and a steel plant in a race with China to lock in raw materials for two of the world's fastest-growing economies."

Polish mining stocks gain on tax ruling

Polish stocks are on a tear this week after a top court made a mining-friendly tax ruling. Bloomberg reports that Polish stocks climbed for a second day, with the benchmark index heading for the biggest advance in a week, as coal and copper producers jumped after the Constitutional Tribunal ruling on mining taxes: "The court ruled that mining excavations should not be considered as construction works and should be free of real-estate taxes."