Miner BHP Billiton has reported record levels of half year production, with output for oil, natural gas, iron ore, alumina and copper all reaching new highs.

The increases were supported by what the firm called strong market conditions. Analysts have said that the production levels met market expectations and that half year net profit was expected to be £3.6 billion, reports the BBC.

BHP is currently attempting to takeover fellow mining firm Rio Tinto. BHP has been given until 6 February 2008 by the UK Takeover Panel to make a bid for Rio Tinto.

According to the BBC, BHP is expected either to make an offer for Rio of around $140 billion or make no offer at all.

Rio, who have also reported record levels of production recently, have said that BHP's current offer undervalues the company.