Rio Tinto begins coal mining in Tete, Mozambique

29 March 2012

Australian mining company Rio Tinto has announced the start of exploration in the Benga area of Moatize district, in Mozambique’s Tete province and the initial lot form the mine is already being processed, Mozambican newspaper Notícias reported.

The managing director of Rio Tinto, Eric Finlayson, said in Beira that the company was in talks with Mozambican port and rail manager Empresa Pública Portos e Caminhos de Ferro de Moçambique with a view to setting up partnerships to fund construction of a branch-line between the railway station at Moatize and the Benga region by 2015.

Finlayson also said that Rio Tinto was seriously considering investing in integrated transport in the Zambezi valley, in Moatize, as well as in the new port on the coast of Zambézia, in Quelimane.

By 2017 the Benga mine will have a power plant fired by coal slag mined by Rio Tinto, and the power produced there may also supply other parts of the country.

Rio Tinto and Brazilian operator Vale Moçambique, which also operates in Tete, together expect to export over 100 million tons of coal to India in the next five years. (macauhub)