Rio Tinto has signed an agreement to sell Alcan Composites, part of the Alcan Engineered Products division of the North American aluminium producer, to Schweiter Technologies for $349m.

The Alcan Composites deal with the Swiss machinery manufacturer is expected to close before the end of the year, Rio said.

Last week Rio announced the sale of 56% of the Alcan Engineered Products Cable unit to Platinum Equity.

Rio Tinto finance director Guy Elliott said that over the past three months the company has made considerable progress in selling the downstream assets acquired with Alcan, including offers or agreed sales for the majority of Alcan Packaging and Cable.

“Schweiter Technologies is well placed to successfully develop the Composites business, and we are realising further value for Rio Tinto shareholders,” Elliott said.

Since March 2008, Rio Tinto has announced asset sales of $7bn, including this most recent transaction.