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Rio Tinto building

The months-long acquisition of Turquoise Hill Resources has finally been completed, with Rio announcing it now holds 66 per cent direct interest in the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia.

The remaining 34 per cent is owned by the Mongolian Government through Erdenes Oyu Tolgoi.

“Oyu Tolgoi is an outstanding asset with incredible people that will deliver significant long-term value for Rio Tinto and Mongolia,” Rio Tinto chief executive Jakob Stausholm said.

“I would like to acknowledge the Turquoise Hill board and management, under the leadership of Peter Gillin and Steve Thibeault, for their considerable effort and support over the years, working in partnership with Rio Tinto and the Government of Mongolia in developing Oyu Tolgoi into a world-class mine.

“I would like to offer my best wishes to each of them for the future.”

Buy-out discussions of Turquoise Hill Resources began back in March 2022, with an offer of $US2.7 billion that was turned down.

The next offer of $US3.1 billion in August was similarly rejected.

Rio’s final offer of $US3.3 billion was accepted in December and Rio Tinto was finally granted approval to acquire the remaining 49 per cent of Turquoise Hill by a majority shareholder vote on December 9.

“This acquisition further strengthens our copper portfolio, as part of our strategy to grow in materials the world needs for achieving net zero and delivering long-term value for our shareholders,” Rio Tinto copper chief executive Bold Baatar said.

“We now have a simpler and more efficient ownership and governance structure, with our partner the Government of Mongolia, as we proceed together towards sustainable production from the underground mine.”

Turquoise Hill has now become a wholly owned subsidiary of Rio Tinto and Turquoise Hill shares will cease trading.