Ivanhoe Mines Ltd., which owns 66 percent of the Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold project in Mongolia, said a ruling in the arbitration proceedings with Rio Tinto Group over a shareholder-rights plan is expected in December.
Hearings before the arbitrator started Oct. 4 and ended Nov. 4, Vancouver-based Ivanhoe said today in its third-quarter earnings statement.
Ivanhoe and London-based Rio have been in arbitration over Ivanhoe’s adoption last year of the rights plan and Ivanhoe’s claim that Rio broke an agreement not to discuss selling a stake in Ivanhoe or the Oyu Tolgoi mine with potential buyers without Ivanhoe’s permission. Rio, which owns 49 percent of Ivanhoe, is barred from making a hostile bid for Ivanhoe under an agreement that expires Jan. 18.
The project will be one of the world’s five biggest copper mines, according to Rio, which is managing development.
Overall construction of Oyu Tolgoi was 54 percent complete as of the end of the third quarter and should be more than 70 percent complete by the end of this year, Ivanhoe said today. Commercial production is expected to begin within the first half of 2013, the company said.
Ivanhoe rose 3.6 percent to C$21.49 in Toronto. The shares have declined 6.6 percent this year.