Anglo American has rebuffed a second, higher offer from Melbourne-based mining giant BHP, raising questions about whether the Australian group can make the complex £34bn (R784bn) deal fly without Anglo’s co-operation — even if it pays more.

BHP, whose first proposal for an all-share merger was rejected by Anglo’s board in April, said on Monday it had raised its offer by 15%, increasing Anglo shareholders’ share in the merged group from 14.8% to 16.6%. But it left the structure of the deal unchanged as it continued to insist Anglo unbundle its key SA subsidiaries Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) and Kumba Iron Ore to its shareholders before the merger itself could be consummated...

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