UPDATE 1-Vietnam steel maker Hoa Phat acquires Australia's Roper Valley iron ore mine

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HANOI, May 31 (Reuters) - Vietnam’s steel maker Hoa Phat said on Monday it has acquired the Roper Valley iron ore mine project in Australia, marking the company’s first step to secure its own supplies in the world’s biggest iron ore producer.

The project is estimated to have 320 million tonnes of reserves, with mining capacity at four million tonnes per year, Hoa Phat said in a statement.

A Hoa Phat spokesperson declined to disclose financial details, citing a confidentiality agreement.

Hoa Phat said it was also looking to acquire coking coal mines and more iron ore projects in Australia to fulfil at least 50% of its demand, equivalent to 10 million tonnes of steel per year.

Founded in 1992, Hoa Phat, which has a market capitalisation of more than $9.6 billion, is Vietnam’s largest steel maker with a crude steel production capacity of eight million tonnes a year, according to the company’s filing. (Reporting by Phuong Nguyen Editing by Ed Davies)