Rio Tinto in Russia to Meet Uralkali

08.09.2010 -

Representatives of Rio Tinto have come to Russia to visit potash producer Uralkali which is seen as a potential acquisition target for the mining giant, Vedomosti reported on Wednesday.

Rio Tinto, along with Potash, could buy into Uralkali as Russia seeks a full overhaul of the fertilisers industry, sources told press representatives last month, adding that talks were at an early stage.

A team from Rio Tinto has arrived in Russia, three sources close to Uralkali and its shareholders told Vedomosti. One of the sources said Rio Tinto was ready to buy 10-15% of the Russian company based on a valuation of $15 billion.

The delegation from Rio is studying the work of Uralkali, which has a market capitalisation of about $9.9 billion, one of the sources said.
Uralkali's owner Suleiman Kerimov has also visited the company this Monday, a source close to the company said.