Chris Salisbury

Chief Executive, Iron Ore


Chris Salisbury, executive team

Over the past half-century, iron ore from Western Australia has helped transform entire cities – from Shanghai to Tokyo to Perth. Today, as the world charts a new vision of progress, we are confident iron ore and steel will continue to play an important role.

Chris has been chief executive of our Iron Ore product group since 2016. He sees improving safety and wellbeing as integral to the success of the business and has consistently delivered strong financial results.

Driving innovation is a priority for Chris, including the safe commissioning of the world's first automated, long-distance, heavy haul rail network - AutoHaul™ - and construction of Koodaideri, our most technologically advanced mine, due to commence operation in 2021. This goes hand-in-hand with ensuring the workforce has the skills to thrive in the mining sector of the future. The 2019 launch of Australia’s first nationally recognised qualifications in automation is an example of Chris' leadership on this issue.

Chris places great value on the need to work closely with external partners to create benefit for the communities in which we operate. He has strong relationships with our many community partners, including the Royal Flying Doctors Service and State Library of Western Australia.

Chris has been with Rio Tinto since 1988 and held previous roles as acting chief executive of the former Copper & Coal product group and managing director of Rio Tinto Coal Australia. He has also held positions such as executive and non-executive director of Energy Resources of Australia Ltd, and chairman of Queensland Alumina Limited. He is the chair of Robe River Mining Co. Pty Ltd and sits on the board of a number of Rio Tinto Group companies.

He is currently a board member of the Minerals Council of Australia and chairs its Workforce and Innovation Committee, which provides strategic direction to maximise the industry's capability to innovate and support its workforce to learn, grow and work. He is also a member of the Australia-Japan Business Cooperation Council.