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Asarco to sell mining assets to India copper producer

Citizen Staff Writer

Deal worth $1.7 billion

Bankrupt Tucson-based Asarco agreed to sell all its copper mining assets to a subsidiary of Sterlite Industries of India for $1.7 billion, Asarco announced Friday.

The deal includes the Mission, Silver Bell and Ray open-pit mines near Tucson.

The sale, which involves $1.1 billion in cash and a nine-year promissory note for $600 million, requires bankruptcy court approval. Until then Asarco can still shop for other buyers.

Asarco, with 2,500 employees, is the third largest copper producer in the United States, and Sterlite is India’s largest copper producer.

The Asarco mines have an estimated 5 million tons of copper. Asarco sold 237,000 tons of refined copper in 2008 with revenue of $1.9 billion, the company reported.



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