UPDATE 1-Mongolia says seeks to end Oyu Tolgoi impasse at parliament session

Thu Mar 20, 2014 2:07am EDT
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* Mongolia looks to resolution over Oyu Tolgoi dispute

* Official says will be a topic when parliament session starts April 5

* Deadline for key financing expires March 31 (Adds details)

SYDNEY, March 20 (Reuters) - Mongolia will seek to resolve an impasse with mining group Rio Tinto over the $6 billion Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold project during a parliamentary session starting next month, a senior government official said on Thursday.

The three-month session begins on April 5, five days after Rio Tinto has warned that lender commitments on existing project finance arrangements expire.

"It will all come together then," Mongolia's Minister for Foreign Affairs Bold Luvsanvandan said in Sydney, when asked if the impasse was slated for discussion during the session.

Rio Tinto did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The company has warned the finance agreement is due to expire March 31, after having been extended last year by lenders, which include International Finance Corp and European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

A major hurdle to getting Mongolia's largest foreign investment project back on track has been $4 billion in financing   Continued...