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BHP chief says Australia iron ore inquiry 'a terrible signal'

Andrew MacKenzie, CEO of BHP Billiton, announces the company interim report in Melbourne, in February 2014The head of global miner BHP Billiton on Tuesday warned an inquiry into the iron ore industry in Australia would send “a terrible signal” about the nation’s competitiveness and turn off key buyer China. The government is considering a parliamentary probe amid claims mining giants BHP and Rio Tinto have been flooding the market, driving down prices, to wipe out smaller competitors. BHP chief executive Andrew Mackenzie said this was “absolutely not” the case and warned an inquiry could backfire on Australia, which earns billions of dollars from the steel-making commodity — the nation’s largest export.

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