Rio Tinto’s $7bn Oyu Tolgoi copper mine begins underground operations

The Oyu Tolgoi copper mine – seen as a key element in delivering on decarbonisation goals – has begun underground operations in Mongolia’s Gobi Desert.

The Prime Minister of Mongolia, Luvsannamsrain Oyun-Erdene, today joined Rio Tinto Chief Executive Jakob Stausholm 1.3km underground to mark the start of  underground production.

The opening marks a milestone for the $7bn mine which had been beset by delays. An agreement between the Government of Mongolia and Rio Tinto was signed in January 2022, which ‘reset the relationship and moved the project forward’, and today Oyu Tolgoi is jointly owned by Erdenes Oyu Tolgoi LLC on behalf of the Government of Mongolia (34%) and Rio Tinto (66%).

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