Simandou in Guinea. Oyu Tolgoy in Mongolia. Madagascar mineral sands. Eighteen months ago Rio Tinto trumpeted long and loud these enormous mining developments which it said would deliver far brisker future growth than takeover suitor BHP Billiton’s muted equivalents, such as Olympic Dam in South Australia.
Under fire from disgruntled shareholders, Rio Tinto’s chief executive Tom Albanese might consider a new career in the music industry. Such is Tom’s similarity to twins Charlie and Craig Reid, founders of Auchtermuchty duo The Proclaimers, institutional investors have speculated he would be a logical addition to the band’s line-up.