October 24, 2012 / 1:12 AM / 5 years ago

BHP considers sale of Arizona copper mine - FT

LONDON (Reuters) - BHP Billiton (BHP.AX) (BLT.L) is exploring the sale of its Pinto Valley copper mine in Arizona, which might fetch less than $1 billion, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday.

BHP is working with advisers to consider a sale of the mine, the FT said, citing people familiar with the matter. The report also cited sources as saying that the miner was working with Citigroup (C.N).

BHP declined to comment.

A source close to the situation said Pinto Valley was one among a list of assets BHP is reviewing as it narrows its focus on large, scaleable assets.

BHP said in February that it would restart operations at the Pinto Valley mine, with annual production capacity of about 60,000 tonnes of copper and which also produces molybdenum concentrate.

    The Financial Times cited people familiar with the matter as saying that the possible sale was unrelated to an incident last month in which a contract worker at Pinto Valley was fatally injured and operations were suspended.

    Reporting by Stephen Mangan; Additional reporting by Clara Ferreira Marques; Editing by Edmund Klamann

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