A new Australian graphite refinery plant to supply the global lithium battery industry is a step closer to being built this week after EcoGraf Limited secured a promise of AUS104 million ($72 million) from the country’s government.
Export Finance Australia is considering the provision of debt finance, subject to a detailed assessment, to fund the spherical graphite producer’s proposed battery graphite purification plant in Kwinana, Western Australia.
Export Finance Australia is a corporate entity that operates under the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
The plant will launch with a 5,000tpa capacity at a cost of $23 million before expanding to 20,000tpa following further investment of $49 million.
Graphite procured and processed at the Kwinana facility from a range of suppliers and will be exported to lithium-ion battery makers in Asia, Europe and the US.
A detailed financial model has been prepared for the Kwinana funding process that incorporates proposed terms for a $35 million debt funding package, comprising around 50% of the total construction cost
The new state-of-the-art processing plant will incorporate the company’s proprietary processing technology to manufacture purified spherical graphite for the lithium-ion battery market.
EcoGraf has signed a Letter of Intent with GR Engineering Services for the construction, operation and maintenance of the Kwinana plant and the parties are preparing final contract documentation.