MINING.com reported that the United States’ refusal to vote on World Bank funding aimed at expanding Rio Tinto’s (ASX:RIO,LSE:RIO,NYSE:RIO) Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold mine has thrown a wrench in the company’s plans as it has created pressure for the company to substantially change the project. Among other things, the US is reportedly concerned that the project’s Environmental and Social Assessment “has gaps in critically important information.”
As quoted in the market news:
Operator Turquoise Hill Resources (TSX:TRQ), which is controlled by Rio, has already spent more than $6 billion on the mine in the south Gobi desert where it hopes to start commercial production by June.
The additional $4.5 billion debt package being negotiated with the International Finance Corporation, the World Bank’s private sector arm, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and several private institutions is needed to develop Oyu Tolgoi to full capacity with an underground mine to compliment the open pit.