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Rio Tinto announces record underlying earnings of $15.5 billion – net earnings reduced by impairment charge

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• Record underlying earnings of $15.5 billion, 11 per cent above 2010.
• Net earnings of $5.8 billion, 59 per cent below 2010, primarily as a result of an impairment charge of $8.9 billion related to the Group’s aluminium businesses.
• Record underlying EBITDA1 of $28.5 billion, 10 per cent above 2010.
• Record cash flows from operations up 16 per cent to $27.4 billion.
• Capital expenditure of $12.3 billion in 2011, compared with $4.6 billion in 2010. Total capital expenditure for 2012 on approved projects and sustaining capital is expected to be $16 billion. Further project approvals, mainly in the Pilbara, are likely to increase this level of investment as the growth programme continues.
– Pilbara iron ore expansion to 283 million tonnes per annum (Mt/a) now fully approved and on track to be in operation by end of 2013: second planned phase expansion of Pilbara capacity enhanced to 353 Mt/a and completion brought forward by six months to first half of 2015.
– Growth options enhanced in Mongolia, Mozambique and South Africa: Rio Tinto moves to majority stake in Ivanhoe, completes Riversdale acquisition providing entry to an emerging major coking coal resource and announces doubling of stake in Richards Bay Minerals.
• 34 per cent increase to full year dividend to 145 US cents per share, reflecting confidence in long-term outlook.
• $7 billion share buy-back programme on track for completion by end of the first quarter. To date $6.2 billion has been completed, representing 103 million Rio Tinto plc shares equivalent to five per cent of the Group’s issued share capital.


About Rio Tinto

Rio Tinto is a leading international mining group headquartered in the UK, combining Rio Tinto plc, a London and New York Stock Exchange listed company, and Rio Tinto Limited, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange.

Rio Tinto's business is finding, mining, and processing mineral resources. Major products are aluminium, copper, diamonds, thermal and metallurgical coal, uranium, gold, industrial minerals (borax, titanium dioxide and salt) and iron ore. Activities span the world and are strongly represented in Australia and North America with significant businesses in Asia, Europe, Africa and South America.


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