Sydney, Australia (4E) – Rio Tinto PLC reported higher profit in first-half profit more than doubled and its debt fell, as shareholders could expect higher returns after years of huge investment spending.
First-half net profit rose to $4.4bn, compared with $1.7bn a year earlier. The company’s iron-ore production more than offset the sharp fall in the price of metal, while earnings were also helped a better performance from its copper and aluminum operations.
The Anglo-Australian mining firm announced Thursday a higher-than-estimated cost cuts and said it would reduce spending on huge projects than expected this year, after increased efforts to tackle weak commodity prices by selling pits and laying off thousands of workers.
The mining group now estimates its capital expenditure to drop to $9bn this year, lower than its earlier forecast of $11bn, and $8bn in 2015, less than half the levels in 2012.