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[LONDON] Glencore said on Monday it plans to sell copper mines in Australia and Chile as the mining and trading company aims to reduce its debt.
Asset sales are part of a broad plan Glencore outlined to raise money to cut its US$30 billion in net debt by about a third to weather a slump in commodity prices and revive its shares, which have dropped 57 per cent this year.
Glencore said it would to sell its wholly-owned Cobar copper mine in Australia and Lomas Bayas copper mine in Chile after receiving interest from potential buyers. "This will allow potential buyers to bid to purchase either one or both of the mines and may or may not result in a sale,"Glencore said in a statement.
Cobar produces about 50,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate per annum, while the Lomas Bayas mine's annual output is about 75,000 tonnes of copper cathode.
Glencore has also pledged to cut capital expenditure, suspend dividend payments and raise US$2.5 billion of new equity capital, with the share sale completed last month.
The company has said it was looking to sell a minority stake in its agricultural business, and last month sold a Brazilian nickel project for US$8 million.
To shore up commodity markets, the company has cut production of copper, coal and zinc. Last Friday, zinc on the London Metal Exchange rose 10 per cent after Glencore said it would slash its output by a third.