BHP Billiton also dependent on China for large proportion of sales
Rio Tinto Group, the world’s second-biggest iron-ore producer, has never been so dependent on China as the country prepares to prosecute four of its employees for bribery and obtaining trade secrets. London-based Rio’s sales to China overtook North America and Europe in 2009, reaching 24.3 per cent of the total from 18.8 per cent a year earlier, it said yesterday. The proportion of sales to China, the world’s biggest iron-ore consumer, has doubled since 2004.
China also accounted for 20 percent of the sales of BHP Billiton, the world’s largest mining company, in the year ending June 30, 2008.