Australian Senate Reviewing Foreign Investment

The Australian parliament’s upper house Senate voted on Wednesday to hold an inquiry into foreign investment from state-owned companies, as the government considers China’s planned US$19.5bn investment in global miner Rio Tinto.

The inquiry, proposed by conservative National Party senate leader Barnaby Joyce, will report back by June 17 with the deadline unlikely to cause any delays for the deal, although it will allow politicians to vent any concerns.

Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board is examining the Chinalco-Rio deal and two other Chinese investments in miners — Minmetals’ $1.7 billion rescue bid for OZ Minerals Ltd and Hunan Valin Iron and Steel Group’s $768 million plan to buy a 16.5 percent stake in iron ore miner Fortescue Metals Group .

(Reporting by James Grubel)

Source: Thomson Merger News