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Andrew Mackenzie plans to stick with BHP, continue streamlining operations

Greenhouse gas and gold mines Nearly 1 ton of CO2 emitted per ounce of gold produced in 2019

Essential Metals & Mining Insights - September 2020

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Andrew Mackenzie plans to stick with BHP, continue streamlining operations

BHP Billiton Group CEO Andrew Mackenzie has no plans to leave the company in the near future and said he has various new ideas to transform the company, Financial Times reported Sept. 11.

Mackenzie has narrowed the company's focus to 13 operated assets focused on just four commodities — copper, iron ore, coking coal and offshore oil — down from an interest in 41 projects when the executive took charge in 2013.

The diversified miner's net debt has dropped to US$10.9 billion, from US$29.1 billion in 2013.

MacKenzie said he is "very excited" about further streamlining the company's operations, adding that "it's not unreasonable to think I am the right guy to lead it."

In October 2017, Chairman Ken MacKenzie threw his full support behind Andrew Mackenzie and dispelled rumors that the chief executive had a set timeline for his tenure.

In the latest interview, the BHP CEO also said the company's portfolio was close to "ideal," and no further divestments are in the cards. The executive is interested in increasing the company's copper and offshore oil holdings but said this would likely come from exploration.

He also signaled a focus on further cost-cutting by reviewing the company's cost base, technology use and its trouble-plagued Olympic Dam copper mine in South Australia.