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TEXT-S&P Rates BHP Billiton Finance Ltd.'s A$1 Billion MTN 'A+'

(The following was released by the rating agency)

MELBOURNE (Standard & Poor's) Oct. 10, 2012- Standard &Poor's Ratings Services said today that it had assigned its 'A+'long-term credit rating to BHP Billiton Finance Ltd.'s A$1billion 3.75% notes due 2017. The notes are issued under BHPBilliton Finance's A$5 billion medium-term note program and areguaranteed by BHP Billiton Ltd. (A+/Stable/A-1). The proceedswill be used for general corporate purposes.

The ratings on diversified resources company BHP Billiton(incorporating BHP Billiton Ltd. and BHP Billiton PLC) reflectour view of the Australia-based company's excellent marketposition, substantial portfolio diversification, low-costoperations, conservative financial policies, and solid projectpipeline. Partly offsetting these strengths are the company'ssensitivity to volatile commodity prices and a measured exposureto higher-risk emerging markets. BHP Billiton is the world'slargest diversified resources company, based on sales turnoverand market capitalization.

RELATED CRITERIA AND RESEARCH 2008 Corporate Criteria:Analytical Methodology, April 15, 2008

Keywords: MARKETS RATINGS BHPBILLITONFINANCELTD