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New shipments

Pilbara metals loaded its first spodumene shipment from Pilgangoora lithium-tantalum project in Western Australia (processed by Pilgangoora’s concentrator). Next shipment of about 15,000 wmt is planned for 3rd week of October. General Lithium and Ganfeng Lithium are Pilbara’s offtake partners.

Seller: Pilbara Minerals

Port of departure: Port Hedland, West Australia

Vessel: M.V. Pola Devora

Volume: 8800 wet metric tonnes


6.1% lithia

1.2% iron

ETD : 2018-10-02

ETA:  2018-10-12

Destination: Nantong port, China
AMG Mineração (Brazilian subsidiary of Advanced Metallurgical Group NV (AMG)) shipped its first batch of lithium spodumene concentrate from Mibra mine/concentration plant to off-take partners in China.

Seller: AMG Mineração

Port of departure: ?

Vessel: ?

Volume: 1,000-2,000 tonnes

Quality: min 5.5-6.5%

ETD:  ?

ETA : ?

Destination:  ?

Lithium and politics in Czech Republic

European Metals Holdings LTD received drilling permits for 13 new holes at the Cinovec project in the Czech Republic, what amounts to a success considering the approach of the regulator to the activities of the company. Due to the change of political climate, involvement of Czech companies is preferred.

The state enterprise Diamo is groomed to become actively involved in a project to mine lithium at Cínovec. Mr. Babiš said he would meet the ministers of the environment and industry and trade to discuss the matter. He said Diamo would have to be forced to be more active as it had done nothing to date.

After 11 years new CEO

Orocobre has appointed a new CEO Martin Perez de Solay. He replaced Richard Seville, who served the company for 11 years.

Some of the main opportunities for Orocobre are:

  • Olaroz stage two expansion
  • Increase of lithium carbonate production to 45,000 MT per annum
  • Development of lithium hydroxide plant in Japan with capacity of 10,000 MTs per annum


Ganfeng’s stellar growth

Ganfeng Lithium will invest in increase in production of battery-grade lithium hydroxide to 25,000 tonnes per year at its Mahong plant, in Xinyu, Jiangxi province.

Ganfeng’s current production line has an annual capacity of 15,000 tons of battery-grade lithium carbonate and 20,000 tons of lithium hydroxide monohydrate.

Company aims to complete the expansion within 18 months. It recently won a five-year deal with BMW to supply lithium compounds to lithium battery or cathode makers as selected by BMW, extended its contract with LG Chem (47,600 tonnes of lithium hydroxide from 2019 to the end of 2022) and signed a new supply agreement with Tesla. Ganfeng will supply Tesla with 20% of its lithium hydroxide production capacity between 2018 and the end of 2020 at an adjustable market price.

Ganfeng Lithium, which already trades on the Shenzhen stock exchange, priced its initial public offering in Hong Kong at the bottom of its expected range, raising $422m.

The market for Hong Kong IPOs this year is considered weak.

Ganfeng is set to start trading in Hong Kong on October 11th.

Tianqi Lithium also plans to list on the same exchange later this year.


Albemarle lithium earnings have increased nearly 6x since 2014 and may exceed 50% of corporate earnings by 2021

Western Australia’s pole position

Australia’s chief resource economist, Mark Cully in latest quarterly report from Department of Industry, says exports of iron ore, coal and LNG are expected to increase 55 per cent to $48 billion this year.

He advocates however for acting quickly for opportunities represented by extraction of battery materials and hosting a genuine downstream processing industry, which could lift the value of lithium exports over 20x.

Australia’s lithium exports have risen from about $117 million in 2012 to $780 million in 2017. By the end of the year it’s predicted WA will produce half the world’s supply of lithium.

A total of 5 lithium hydroxide refineries are either under construction or planned for WA over the next five years.

About 2600 people are employed on WA’s seven lithium mines, up from 400 just four years ago.

Federal Labor claims to “supercharge” Australia’s involvement in the lithium-ion battery sector by lavishly supporting it with research dollars and access to infrastructure and manufacturing funds in billions, if they win an upcoming election.

Current Federal Resources Minister Matt Canavan stated the Government would take a lead role in promoting Australia’s lithium potential worldwide. There are concerns about the Government’s planned research and development tax changes, which introduces a $4 million cap on rebates for junior companies spending on R&D.

Curtin University together with Lithium Australia and Tianqi Lithium is leading the bid for the $100 million Future Battery Industries Cooperative research centre that aims to connect research and industry to develop a cutting-edge battery cluster in Australia.

The national consortium behind the Curtin bid raised about $27 million towards the bid and is seeking further $25 million from the federal government through the Cooperative research centre funding process.

Cooperative research centres are funded by private, public and educational sector to develop industry applicable IP.


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