Allens advises Rio Tinto on historic Channar Joint Venture

By Mark McAleer
Energy Infrastructure Resources

Allens has acted for Rio Tinto on its arrangement with Sinosteel Corporation to extend the historic Channar Joint Venture, one of the longest running and most successful examples of Chinese foreign investment in Australia.

The deal will see the Channar Joint Venture extended for an additional 30 million tonnes of iron ore production, with at least seven million tonnes per annum supplied to Sinosteel in each year of the second extension term.

'Allens are proud to have worked with Rio Tinto on the Channar Joint Venture since its commencement in 1987,' said Mark McAleer, lead partner on the deal.

'As a firm, Allens have provided ongoing advice to Rio Tinto on numerous aspects of the project for more than 30 years, since negotiations for the joint venture started in the mid-1980's, including the first extension in 2010, so it is particularly pleasing for us as a firm to have been able to assist Rio Tinto in bringing the second extension to this point.'

The Channar Joint Venture is considered a benchmark for Chinese investors seeking to invest in Australian resources projects.

'This deal highlights the continued importance of the economic relationship between China and Australia, despite the recent softening of resources-focused investment and commodities prices,' Mark said.

The deal was signed at concurrent ceremonies in Perth and Beijing, witnessed by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.

The term of the second extension is expected to take effect from mid-2016.

The extension remains subject to approvals from the Foreign Investment Review Board and Western Australian Government.

Allens legal team

Mark McAleer (Partner, Perth); Jodi Reinmuth (Partner, Perth); Daniel Knight (Managing Associate, Perth); Bree Rowswell (Senior Associate, Perth); and Alistair Stolz (Lawyer. Perth).


Notes for editors.

Allens is a commercial law firm working throughout Australia and Asia. Through its integrated alliance with Linklaters it provides clients access to 40 offices in 28 countries around the world.