Amcor Bids $2 Billion For Rio Tinto Packaging Unit

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) -- Packaging company Amcor has offered to buy Rio Tinto's remaining Alcan Packaging divisions for $2.025 billion, the mining giant said Tuesday.

The offer encompasses global packaging operations that span pharmaceuticals, tobacco and food.

"We believe Amcor's offer is in the interests of all stakeholders," Rio Tinto chief financial officer, Guy Elliott, said in the statement to the Australian stock exchange.

Rio incurred significant debt in its 2007 purchase of Canadian aluminum giant Alcan Inc. for $38 billion, and earlier this year sold its Alcan Packaging Food Americas division to U.S.-based Bemis Company Inc. for $1.2 billion.

"We have already agreed to asset sales of $6.6 billion ($A8.04 billion) over the last 18 months, despite the challenging financial markets," Elliott said in a statement.

The divisions of Alcan Packaging that would be sold to Amcor employ about 14,000 staff at 80 locations in 28 countries.

The sale is dependent on approvals from European and American regulators.

The remaining Alcan Packaging division, Beauty, will be sold separately, Rio Tinto said.

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