Rio Tinto wants more than to be a side line partner for Ivanhoe Mines in Mongolia. The Canadian miner Ivanhoe was assisted by Rio to end lengthy and complicated 5 year old negotiations under Mongolian mining law for the largest undeveloped copper deposit in the world.
However as things stand now Rio Tinto is not happy. It would be hard to miss the dispute over their joint Oyu Tolgoi project in Mongolia. Ivanhoe's recent integrated development plan showcases the prospect that Oyu Tolgoi can sustain average production of 410,000 tonnes of copper and 455,000 ounces of gold over a 59-year mine life.
Rio Tinto is involved in the technical and financial progress of Ivanhoe's Oyu Tolgoi project but it has no direct stake in Mongolia. While it does have a 22.4% stake in Ivanhoe it wants to capture 7.3% more.
Disagreements on key policies seem to be the provoking factor. In fact Rio Tinto confirmed it has called for formal arbitration to settle a boardroom dispute with Ivanhoe. This is on the heels of Rio Tinto's objection to Ivanhoe's recently adopted shareholder rights scheme which it now wants a third party to review.