Rio Tinto sells Australia coal mine to Indonesia's Salim for $224 million | Reuters

MELBOURNE Global miner Rio Tinto Plc (RIO.L)(RIO.AX) has agreed to sell one of its last remaining coal mines in Australia to a group owned by Indonesia's third-richest man, Anthoni Salim, continuing an exit from coal as it battles a sharp slump in prices.

Rio Tinto said on Monday it was selling its Mount Pleasant thermal coal assets in the Hunter Valley in New South Wales to a private company, MACH Energy Australia Pty Ltd, for $224 million plus royalties.

MACH is an entity owned by Indonesian conglomerate Salim Group.

The royalties from the mine would only be paid when coal prices top $72.50 a tonne, well above the current price of $47.37 GCLNWCWIDX.

"We believe Mount Pleasant can have a very positive future under its new owners with different priorities for development and capital allocation," Rio Tinto copper and coal chief executive Jean-Sebastien Jacques said in a statement.

The sale of the Mount Pleasant mine, which has marketable reserves of 474 million tonnes, follows Rio Tinto's sale of its stake in the Bengalla joint venture last year for $606 million and leaves it with the Hunter Valley Operations and Mount Thorley Warkworth mines.

(Reporting by Sonali Paul)

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Updated Date: Jan 27, 2016 04:45:10 IST

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