Alcan joins Rio Tinto to create global aluminium leader



    MONTREAL, Oct. 25 /CNW Telbec/ - Alcan today joined the Rio Tinto group
following the successful Offer for Alcan by a subsidiary of Rio Tinto. The
expanded aluminium product group, formed by the combination of Alcan and Rio
Tinto's existing aluminium assets, today became the new global leader in
aluminium and will be known as Rio Tinto Alcan.
    Rio Tinto chief executive, Tom Albanese and Rio Tinto Alcan chief
executive, Dick Evans hosted special events at Rio Tinto Alcan's Montreal
headquarters and highlighted the opportunities created by bringing Alcan into
the Rio Tinto Group, and the potential for continued strong growth in the
aluminium sector. Similar employee events took place in Brisbane.
    "I am proud to be here to welcome Alcan employees into the Rio Tinto
family", said Tom Albanese. "They have built a company whose values we share.
    "Rio Tinto's strategy is to create shareholder value through investing in
high quality, long life, low cost assets, and Alcan is a terrific addition to
the Rio Tinto group. Together, we have a fantastic opportunity to build an
even stronger global aluminium business through profitable and sustainable
growth."
    "I am personally delighted to have the opportunity to be part of the new
leader in the global aluminium industry, Rio Tinto Alcan," said Dick Evans.
"With our attractive cost position, strong technology portfolio, complementary
refining and smelting assets, and a strong growth pipeline, Rio Tinto Alcan's
mission is to create maximum sustainable value for Rio Tinto shareholders and
to fulfil our mutual commitments to all of our stakeholders," he added.
    The offer for Alcan, which was recommended by the Alcan Board, was
announced by Rio Tinto on 12 July 2007 and has received approvals from
relevant authorities and governments globally and the support of Rio Tinto
shareholders.
    Both Rio Tinto and Alcan have been recognised as leading stewards of the
environment and the communities in which they operate, and in putting worker
safety at the top of the priority list, and this philosophy would be
maintained, stressed Tom Albanese and Dick Evans.
    "Rio Tinto Alcan will maintain commitments to excellence in health,
safety and environmental performance, working together to ensure the economic,
environmental, and social sustainability of the communities in which we
operate," said Dick Evans.
    A new look and logo are being introduced for the Rio Tinto Alcan product
group. The new logo represents the rich heritage of both companies and
signifies strength, confidence and leadership.

    Rio Tinto in Canada

    Rio Tinto has been an investor in Canada for decades and currently has
significant business activities in the Province of Québec (including QIT-Fer
et Titane and Iron Ore Company of Canada), and the Northwest Territories
(Diavik Diamond Mines).
    Rio Tinto is committed to investing in the Rio Tinto Alcan presence in
Canada, particularly in the Provinces of Québec and British Columbia, in
addition to locating the headquarters of the combined aluminium product group
in Montréal. The product group's aluminium smelting technology research and
development headquarters will also be located in Québec.

    Rio Tinto in Australia

    Australia's strengths in bauxite extraction, alumina refinery operations
and project development will be enhanced by locating the combined global
bauxite and alumina business and associated research and development
activities in Brisbane.
    Rio Tinto has a significant programme of capacity growth in place
following the recent announcement of the expansion at Rio Tinto's Yarwun
alumina refinery, and the ongoing bauxite capacity expansion at Weipa.

    Rio Tinto in France

    Rio Tinto has a strong, long-term commitment to France, which it believes
provides an attractive environment in which to invest, conduct business and
engage in world-leading research and development. Rio Tinto recognises
France's long history of expertise and research and development in aluminium
technology, particularly "new cell" smelting technology and is committed to
building on French innovation in this area. Rio Tinto has had operations in
France since 1988 through its Talc de Luzenac business based in Toulouse.
    For more information, please visit: www.riotinto.com/riotintoalcan

    About Rio Tinto

    Rio Tinto is a leading international mining group headquartered in the
UK, combining Rio Tinto plc, a London listed company, and Rio Tinto Limited,
which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange.
    Rio Tinto's business is finding, mining, and processing mineral
resources. Major products are aluminium, copper, diamonds, energy (coal and
uranium), gold, industrial minerals (borax, titanium dioxide, salt, talc) and
iron ore. Activities span the world but are strongly represented in Australia
and North America with significant businesses in South America, Asia, Europe
and southern Africa.

    Additional information

    The offer to purchase all of the issued and outstanding common shares of
Alcan for US$101 per common share in a recommended, all cash transaction (the
"Offer") is being made by Rio Tinto Canada Holding Inc. (the "Offeror"), an
indirect wholly-owned subsidiary of Rio Tinto. The address of the Offeror is
770 Sherbrooke Street West, Suite 1800, Montreal, Quebec, H3A 1G1.
    The Offer represents a total consideration for Alcan common shares of
approximately US$38.1 billion.
    The subsequent offering period has commenced and the Offer is open for
acceptance until 6.00 p.m., Canadian Eastern Time, on November 8, 2007, unless
extended.
    This announcement is for information purposes only and does not
constitute or form part of any offer or invitation to purchase, otherwise
acquire, subscribe for, sell, otherwise dispose of or issue, or any
solicitation of any offer to sell, otherwise dispose of, issue, purchase,
otherwise acquire or subscribe for, any security. The Offer (as the same may
be varied or extended in accordance with applicable law) is being made
exclusively by means of, and subject to the terms and conditions set out in,
the offer and takeover bid circular delivered to Alcan and filed with Canadian
provincial securities regulators and the United States Securities and Exchange
Commission (the "SEC") and mailed to Alcan shareholders.
    The release, publication or distribution of this announcement in certain
jurisdictions may be restricted by law and therefore persons in such
jurisdictions into which this announcement is released, published or
distributed should inform themselves about and observe such restrictions.
    In connection with the Offer, an offer and takeover bid circular as well
as ancillary documents such as a letter of transmittal and a notice of
guaranteed delivery have been filed with the Canadian securities regulatory
authorities and the SEC and an Alcan directors' circular with respect to the
Offer has also been filed. A Tender Offer statement on Schedule TO (the
"Schedule TO") and a Solicitation/Recommendation Statement on Schedule 14D-9
(the "Schedule 14D-9") has also been filed with the SEC.

    SHAREHOLDERS OF ALCAN ARE URGED TO READ THE OFFER AND TAKEOVER BID
CIRCULAR (INCLUDING THE LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL AND NOTICE OF GUARANTEED
DELIVERY), THE SCHEDULE TO (INCLUDING THE OFFER AND TAKEOVER BID CIRCULAR,
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL AND RELATED TENDER OFFER DOCUMENTS) AND THE SCHEDULE
14D-9 AS THEY CONTAIN IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT THE OFFER.

    The offer and takeover bid circular as well as other materials filed with
the Canadian securities regulatory authorities are available electronically
without charge at www.sedar.com. The Schedule TO and the Schedule 14D-9 are
available electronically without charge at the SEC's website, www.sec.gov.
Materials filed with the SEC or the Canadian securities regulatory authorities
may also be obtained without charge at Rio Tinto's website, www.riotinto.com.
    While the Offer is being made to all holders of Alcan common shares, this
announcement does not constitute an offer or a solicitation in any
jurisdiction in which such offer or solicitation is unlawful. The Offer is not
being made in, nor will deposits be accepted in, any jurisdiction in which the
making or acceptance thereof would not be in compliance with the laws of such
jurisdiction. However, the Offeror may, in its sole discretion, take such
action as it may deem necessary to extend the Offer in any such jurisdiction.
    The Offer is made to holders in France of Alcan common shares admitted to
trading on Euronext-Paris. An announcement including the main information
relating to the Offer documents has been prepared and released pursuant to
article 231-24 of the AMF General Regulation and contains information relating
to how and in which time limit Alcan shareholders residing in France can
accept this Offer. The offer document and the announcement prepared pursuant
to article 231-24 of the AMF General Regulation, as amended on 17 September
2007, 23 and 24 October 2007 are available free of charge to the holders of
Alcan Shares registered with Euroclear France who request it from Citi France,
Global Transaction Services, Operations department, 19 le Parvis la Défense 7,
92073 Paris la Défense. They are also available on the internet at the
following address: www.computershare.com/Rio-AlcanFrenchofferdocument.
    The Offer is made to holders in Belgium of Alcan common shares and/or
certificates admitted to trading on Euronext Brussels (the "IDRs"). A Belgian
supplement, addressing issues specific to holders of Alcan common shares
and/or IDRs in Belgium (the "Belgian Supplement") was approved by the Belgian
Banking, Finance and Insurance Commission (the "BFIC") on 2 August 2007. A
notice of extension of the Offer was approved by the BFIC on 18 September 2007
(the "First Supplement"). A second notice of extension of the Offer was
approved by the BFIC on 23 October 2007 (the "Second Supplement"). The offer
document, the Belgian Supplement , the First Supplement and the Second
Supplement are available free of charge to the investors in Belgium who
request it from the Belgian branch of Citibank International plc, Department
GTS Operations, 4th floor, boulevard Général Jacques 263G, 1050 Brussels. They
are also available on the internet at the following address:
www.computershare.com/Rio-AlcanBelgianofferdocument

    Forward looking statements

    This announcement contains statements which constitute "forward-looking
statements" about Rio Tinto and Alcan. Such statements include, but are not
limited to, statements with regard to the outcome of the proposed Offer, any
statements about cost synergies, revenue benefits or integration costs,
capacity, future production and grades, projections for sales growth,
estimated revenues and reserves, targets for cost savings, the construction
cost of new projects, projected capital expenditures, the timing of new
projects, future cash flow and debt levels, the outlook for minerals and
metals prices, the outlook for economic recovery and trends in the trading
environment and may be (but are not necessarily) identified by the use of
phrases such as "will", "intend", "estimate", "expect", "anticipate",
"believe" and "envisage". By their nature, forward-looking statements involve
risk and uncertainty because they relate to events and depend on circumstances
that will occur in the future and may be outside the control of Rio Tinto or
Alcan. Actual results and developments may differ materially from those
expressed or implied in such statements because of a number of factors,
including the outcome of the proposed Offer, revenue benefits and cost
synergies being lower than expected, integration costs being higher than
expected, levels of demand and market prices, the ability to produce and
transport products profitably, the impact of foreign currency exchange rates
on market prices and operating costs, operational problems, political
uncertainty and economic conditions in relevant areas of the world, the
actions of competitors, activities by governmental authorities such as changes
in taxation or regulation and such other risk factors identified in Rio
Tinto's most recent Annual Report on Form 20-F filed with the SEC or Form 6-Ks
furnished to the SEC or Alcan's most recent periodic and current reports on
Form 10-K, 10-Q or 8-K filed with the SEC (as the case may be).
Forward-looking statements should, therefore, be construed in light of such
risk factors and undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking
statements.
    Nothing in this announcement should be interpreted to mean that the
future earnings per share of Rio Tinto will necessarily match or exceed its
historical published earnings per share.

    %B NM %C 1,17,18,20,23 %D Alcan joins Rio Tinto




For further information:

For further information: Media Relations, London: Christina Mills,
Office: +44 (0) 20 8080 1306, Mobile: +44 (0) 7825 275 605; Media Relations,
Australia: Ian Head, Office: +61 (0) 3 9283 3620, Mobile: +61 (0) 408 360 101;
Amanda Buckley, Office: +61 (0) 3 9283 3627, Mobile: +61 (0) 419 801 349;
Media Relations, Montreal: Anik Michaud: (514) 848-8151,
media.relations@alcan.com; Bryan Tucker, (514) 848-8151,
media.relations@alcan.com; Investor Relations, London: Nigel Jones, Office:
+44 (0) 20 7753 2401, Mobile: +44 (0) 7917 227 365; David Ovington, Office:
+44 (0) 20 7753 2326, Mobile: +44 (0) 7920 010 978; Investor Relations,
Australia: Dave Skinner, Office: +61 (0) 3 9283 3628, Mobile: +61 (0) 408 335
309; Investor Relations, North America: Jason Combes, Office: +1 (0) 801 685
4535, Mobile: +1 (0) 801 558 2645; questions@riotinto.com; www.riotinto.com;
High resolution photographs available at: www.newscast.co.uk

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