Rio Tinto boss steps down over $14 billion write-down

  • The chief executive of Rio Tinto has stepped down after the mining giant announced a $14 billion write-down on Thursday.

    The write-down relates to the firm’s aluminium and coal-mining businesses.

    Chief executive Tom Albanese resigned following a mutual agreement with the board. He has been replaced by Sam Walsh, chief executive of the miner's iron ore business.

    In a statement, Rio Tinto chairman Jan du Plessis said the scale of the write-down was "unacceptable".

    The company's aluminium assets saw a write-down ranging from $10 billion to $11 billion and largely relates to the 2007 purchase of Canadian aluminium giant Alcan.

    Around $3 billion of the write-down relates to Rio Tinto's coal mining operations in Mozambique.

    The write-downs will be included in Rio Tinto's full-year results due to be released on February 14.