BHP Billiton has taken the knife to the pay of its chief executive as the world’s largest mining conglomerate continues to adjust to the slump in commodities markets.
Mr Mackenzie’s total remuneration fell by 43pc to $4.6m in the year ending in June, according to the company’s annual report. At the same time BHP indicated that there would be no base salary increases for its senior management team in the current financial year.
Like other mining groups in the sector BHP Billiton is working hard to cut costs to offset a slump in the value of the key resources that it produces such as coal, iron ore and copper. Shares in the Anglo-Australian company, which have fallen 35pc this year, rallied on the news to trade around 1050p.
Despite the challenging conditions the mining giant has maintained its final dividend at 62 US cents per share. However it expects capital expenditure will fall from $11bn in the 2014-15 financial year to $7bn by 2016-17.
In its annual report, chairman Jac Nasser reiterated his statement at the company’s annual general meeting when he said: “Events this year have been a reminder of how uncertain and volatile politics and economics can be.”
Although the commodities sector is struggling to adapt to weaker demand from China, BHP Billiton is thought to be in a stronger position than many of its rivals. In contrast, from shareholders just weeks after it unveiled a plan to slash $10.5bn from its debt.