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New Rio Tinto boss Sam Walsh. Picture: Reuters.
The West Australian New Rio Tinto boss Sam Walsh. Picture: Reuters.

New Rio Tinto chief executive Sam Walsh has quit his independent directorship of Seven West Media.

Mr Walsh, who is relocating to London as part of his new appointment at the global mining giant, has been on the board since taking up a directorship with WA Newspapers in late 2008.

Seven West Media chairman Kerry Stokes said Mr Walsh, Rio's former long-serving iron ore chief, had made an outstanding contribution to the group.

"We congratulate him on his new role at Rio Tinto and understand the time and geographical constraints that have led to his decision to resign from the board of Seven West Media," Mr Stokes said.

He said thecompany, the owner of The West Australian newspaper and thewest.com.au, would seek to appoint a new independent director.

Seven West Media shares closed off four cents, or 1.87 per cent, at $2.10.