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Rio Tinto Starts Joint Venture to Explore for Coal in Mozambique

March 20 (Bloomberg) -- Rio Tinto Group, the world’s second-biggest mining company, set up a joint venture with Mozambique Mining Exploration Co. to explore for coal in the country’s Tete province.

The Changara Mines venture will be 75 percent-held by a unit of Rio and the rest by Mozambique Mining, London-based Rio said in a statement. Rio will transfer three exploration licenses to the venture, it said.

“We want to develop a global competitive coal industry to contribute to Mozambique’s prosperity,” Eric Finlayson, Rio’s local director, said in the statement yesterday. The U.K. company will fund the prospecting and research, it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: William Felimao in Johannesburg at wfelimao@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Viljoen at jviljoen@bloomberg.net

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