Mongolia signs huge copper deal

MONGOLIA is set to become a leading copper exporter after signing an agreement to develop a huge deposit near the Chinese border.<br /><br />The country has signed up with mining companies including Rio Tinto to mine Oyu Tolgoi, a copper-gold deposit in the south Gobi desert.<br /><br />The project&rsquo;s earnings stand to make up one third of the country&rsquo;s gross domestic product and produce 450,000 tonnes of copper a year once its nine-year, $4bn (&pound;2.5bn) construction is complete. That compares with 1.2m tonnes produced last year at the world&rsquo;s largest copper mine.<br />