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Number 18/07

BHP Billiton announced today that Chief Legal Counsel and Head of External Affairs, John Fast, would retire from the Company early in the new financial year.

Mr Fast, who joined BHP in late 1999, said he had enjoyed his period with the Company immensely and was looking forward to applying the experience he had gained to new challenges. "This is a great company and I have enjoyed being part of its tremendous success and growth over the last seven years", he said.

Chief Executive Officer, Chip Goodyear, said that John had made a significant contribution through the execution of best practice across the Company’s legal, government and asset protection functions and by providing his wise counsel on many important issues and strategic transactions. He thanked him for his commitment over the years. "John has been a valued member of my senior executive team and I wish him well in his future career," he said.

An announcement about Mr Fast’s replacement will be made in due course. Until that time, Peter De Zwart, Regional Counsel Americas, will assume the responsibilities of the role.

For further information please contact:

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
Mobile: +44 7769 936 227
email: Alison.Gilbert@bhpbilliton.com

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