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Mongolia pushes Rio for more concessions in $7bn mine talks

Government asks for full debt forgiveness after Australian company raises offer

Turquoise Hill Resources warned this week that the expansion of Oyu Tolgoi could be further delayed unless Rio Tinto and the Mongolian government can agree on financing terms by the end of the month. (Courtesy Turquoise Hill Resources)

ULAANBAATAR -- The Mongolian government is seeking further concessions from Australian mining company Rio Tinto after it proposed new terms for financing the $6.75 billion underground expansion of the vast Oyu Tolgoi copper mine.

"Mongolia wants Rio to clear Mongolia's debt," said Prime Minister Oyun-Erdene Luvsannamsrai on Monday, ahead of a meeting with company officials later in the week, insisting the company should shoulder responsibility for delays and cost increases with the project.

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