May 26, 2018 Last Updated 11:11 AM, May 23, 2018

Rio raises targets for 2016 despite falling prices

ironmineABN - Mining giant Rio Tinto has set even higher iron ore production targets for 2016 despite tumbling prices for the resource.

Last year's production came in at 327.6 million tonnes, up 11 percent on 2014, boosted by expansion in Western Australia's Pilbara region and a rundown of stockpiles.

Rio has bolstered output and set a production target of 350 million tonnes for the coming year.

"Against a challenging market backdrop for the industry, Rio Tinto remains focused on operating and commercial excellence to leverage the low-cost position," said chief executive Sam Walsh.

"In 2015, we delivered efficient production, meeting our targets across all of our major products, while rigorously controlling our cost base.

"We will continue to focus on disciplined management of costs and capital to maximise cash flow generation throughout 2016."

Walsh last month vowed to keep slashing spending in a bid to maintain profits in the face of the commodities rout on oversupplied markets.

He has defended Rio's continued expansion of iron ore output saying Australia could not control market prices, however critics say large miners such as Rio and rival BHP Billiton are raising output to try to flood the market and drive smaller competitors out of business.



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