A commitment to serving customers reliably and on time led us to blaze trails across Death Valley with 20 mule teams hauling heavy wagons of ore. That same commitment continues today, as we leverage our expertise and experience to deliver products to more than 1,000 customers around the world. Each year we move a million tons of borates by truck, train, barge and ship.
To reach customers safely, efficiently and reliably, Rio Tinto Minerals operates a global supply chain engineered to be agile and responsive, making use of storage, distribution and shipping facilities in many locations within the United States, as well as Europe, South America and Asia. Asia is our largest growth region; to better serve customers there, we recently opened distribution facilities in Changshu, China and Port Klang, Malaysia.
To maximize the effectiveness and efficiency of our supply system, we collaborate closely with customers on such issues as inventory management, planning and scheduling. Our Strategic Inventory Placement system helps provide just in time delivery to many customers in North America.