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Rio Tinto lifts iron ore shipments despite China risks, draws on inventory

A stacker unloads iron ore onto a pile at a mine located in the Pilbara region of Western Australia December 2, 2013.

Rio Tinto on Friday posted a 17 percent rise in third-quarter iron ore shipments and said it was on track to meet a full-year target of 340 million tonnes, shrugging off risks from slower economic growth and peaking steel output in China.

In a sign market conditions may be improving, the miner dipped into its inventories - 4 million tonnes from its Australian operations and 1 million from the Canadian business - after production fell short of shipments.

Rio Tinto shipped 91.3 million tonnes over the quarter, outstripping production of 86.1 million tonnes, data from the company's quarterly production report...


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