Lithium-ion batteries may be the chemistry of choice but its success on future markets depend on the mining of lithium.
That is why Canadian minerals companies Western Lithium and Lithium Americas have signed a merger deal to reshape the market.
The deal will combine Western Lithium’s Kings Valley, US, deposit, while Lithium Americas develops an operation at Cauchari-Olaroz in Argentina.
The companies now hope to establish market leadership and reshape the current lithium development sector.
A sector not helped by last month’s shock announcement that Chile and Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile (SQM) – the world’s largest producer of lithium – is in arbitration proceedings. More here
Recent NI 43-101 compliant feasibility studies found the companies have combined deposits of around 3.2 million tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) with initial production rates of 33,000 tonnes per year.
The deal is expected to be completed in early September after Western Lithium bought all of Lithium Americas shares in a C$80 million (£40 million) all-stock transaction.
Elesewhere, Canada’s Nemaska Lithium has received the go ahead for its Quebec Whabouchi project.
The resolution allows the company to pursue project financing discussions to start building the mine, located in the James Bay region, one of the two lithium districts in Quebec.