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Number 29/06

BHP Billiton announced today the appointment of Jimmy Wilson as President of its Stainless Steel Materials Customer Sector Group. In this role Mr. Wilson will have responsibility for all aspects of BHP Billiton's Stainless Steel Materials businesses, including strategy, operations, and delivering growth within our strategic framework.

Mr. Wilson will replace Mr. Chris Pointon, who has announced his retirement from the company.  Mr. Wilson will be located in Perth, Australia, and will join BHP Billiton's Executive Committee.

Mr  Wilson has extensive experience in the metals and mining industry and prior to this appointment was President and COO of Nickel West.  In this role, he successfully managed the integration of the former WMC nickel assets into BHP Billiton. Roles held prior to this include President and COO, Samancor Chrome and General Manager Bayside Aluminium. Mr Wilson holds a BSc Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Natal, South Africa and has been with BHP Billiton for over 14 years.

Mr  Wilson will be replaced as President and COO for Nickel West by Marcelo Bastos.  Mr Bastos was previously President and COO, Cerro Matoso based in Colombia.  He will have overall responsibility for BHP Billiton's Nickel West  business and will report to Mr Wilson.  Mr Bastos holds a Mechanical Engineering degree from Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG) and an MBA from Fundacao Dom Cabral (INSEAD associated).  In taking up his new role, Mr Bastos will relocate from Colombia to Perth, Australia. 

Commenting on the changes, Marius Kloppers, Group President of Non-Ferrous Materials for BHP Billiton said, "Chris Pointon has done an outstanding job building our nickel business over the past nine years.  The highlight was last year's completion of the acquisition of WMC and the successful integration of their nickel business into BHP Billiton.  With Chris' retirement, the promotion of Jimmy and Marcelo represents the appointment of the next tier of our Stainless Steel Materials management team and indicates the depth of management talent within BHP Billiton." 

The changes will be effective 1 January 2007.

Biographical details of Jimmy Wilson and Marcelo Bastos.

Further information on BHP Billiton can be found on our Internet site: www.bhpbilliton.com

Australia
Samantha Evans, Media Relations
Tel: +61 3 9609 2898  Mobile: +61 400 693 915
email: Samantha.Evans@bhpbilliton.com

Jane Belcher, Investor Relations
Tel: +61 3 9609 3952  Mobile: +61 417 031 653
email: Jane.H.Belcher@bhpbilliton.com

United Kingdom
Mark Lidiard, Investor & Media Relations
Tel: +44 20 7802 4156  Mobile: +44 7769 934 942
email: Mark.Lidiard@bhpbilliton.com

Illtud Harri, Media Relations
Tel: +44 20 7802 4195  Mobile: +44 7920 237 246
email: Illtud.Harri@bhpbilliton.com

United States
Tracey Whitehead, Investor & Media Relations
Tel: US +1 713 599 6100 or UK +44 20 7802 4031
Mobile: +44 7917 648 093
email: Tracey.Whitehead@bhpbilliton.com

South Africa
Alison Gilbert, Investor Relations
Tel: SA +27 11 376 2121 or UK +44 20 7802 4183
email: Alison.Gilbert@bhpbilliton.com

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