A net loss of $3 billion (£1.94 billion) was recorded during the year to December after the company wrote down the value of its coal and aluminium businesses.
After taking impairments of $14.4 billion (£9.3 billion) on its aluminium businesses, the Anglo-Australian mining company parted company with chief executive Tom Albanese.
In light of the results, Albanese’s replacement, Sam Walsh, the former head of Rio Tinto’s iron ore business, stated that those running the company now need to act as owners rather than managers.
“Under my leadership, Rio Tinto will have an unrelenting focus on pursuing greater value for shareholders,” Walsh said.
“To do this we need to run the business as owners not managers and my immediate priority is to build more focus, discipline and accountability throughout the organisation.”
Walsh revealed that the company will now embark on a cost-cutting drive that aims to save $5 billion (£3.2 billion) by the end of 2014.
“Looking ahead, we see the positive momentum in the fourth quarter of last year being sustained into 2013 with Chinese GDP growth returning to above 8% in 2013,” Walsh continued.
Despite the annual loss, Rio Tinto declared a full-year dividend of $1.67, higher than the $1.58 forecast by analysts.
Image: © Rio Tinto.