Rio to offload aluminium assets

RIO TINTO will sell 13 aluminium units worldwide, including refineries and smelters in Australia, as the world's second-biggest miner seeks to streamline its Alcan aluminium business.

Rio Tinto said in a statement today the moves were part of a streamlining its aluminium group following a strategic review.

A spokeswoman for Rio Tinto said the changes in Australia did not currently involve any job redundancies.

"The formation of Pacific Aluminium doesn't involve any immediate changes to employees or roles of employees," she said.

The cutbacks are the latest in a series of moves following Rio's badly timed $US39 billion acquisition of Alcan four years ago as it tries to boost the division's performance.

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