MINING giant BHP Billiton Ltd believes a merger with Rio Tinto Ltd would accelerate the development of the Pilbara iron ore industry. A briefing paper released by BHP highlighted WA’s iron ore industry and the east coast coal industry as areas where a merged group would be able to achieve large efficiency gains. BHP has estimated that a merger would deliver synergies worth US$3.7 billion (A$4.1 billion) over seven years through efficiencies and accelerated production volumes to meet growing customer demand.
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