The news was reported by the Wall Street Journal, which cited a person familiar with the bid.
It is understood that the mining major, which has hired Macquarie to find a buyer for Northparkes, expects to sell the project for as much as $1bn.
Rio Tinto has previously considered the sale of Northparkes, but changed its mind due to an increase in metal prices.
The project is worth $800m, according to Citigroup’s report released in February this year.
A fortnight ago it was reported that KKR was mulling a bid for Northparkes.
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