Antofagasta plc has announced that its subsidiary Minera Los Pelambres has agreed to transfer its 40% interest in Alto Maipo SpA to AES Gener SA, signalling its exit from the company incorporated to develop two run-of river hydroelectric power stations in the upper section of the Maipo River, Chile.

News of Antofagasta’s plans to transfer its stake was initially announced back in October, after it was forecast the project would incur 10-20% total cost overrun.

"Mining is our core business,” commented Iván Arriagada, CEO of Antofagasta plc. “We entered into this project when electricity supply in the central region of Chile was constrained to ensure that Los Pelambres would be able to access a reliable source of electricity at competitive prices. We are now close to fulfilling this objective at an improved price, and to ensure a clean, stable and long-term energy supply for Los Pelambres."

The company will make a further announcement once final agreement on the transfer has been reached. If the deal goes ahead, Gener will own 100% of

Alto Maipo.