Zimbabwe’s fledgling lithium mine secures Belgium supply deal

By argusmedia.com

AUSTRALIA: Perth-based lithium developer Prospect Resources has reached an off-take agreement to supply 100,000 t/yr of ultra-low iron petalite over seven years to Belgium-based industrial minerals and material solutions company Sibelco.

The pricing formula is linked to end customer sales contracts with minimum pricing provisions, Prospect said, without giving more details.

The petalite will come from Prospect’s 87pc-owned Arcadia lithium project in Zimbabwe, which a definitive feasibility study has shown can produce 173,000 t/yr of spodumene (lithium concentrate), 174,000 lb/yr of tantalite concentrate and 122,000 t/yr of ultra-low iron and low iron petalite over 15½ years.

Prospect’s Managing Director, Sam Hosack said “I am pleased to announce that we have signed an offtake agreement with Sibelco for Arcadia’s premium ultra-low iron petalite.

“Sibelco is the largest distributor of ultra-low iron petalite in Europe and possibly the world and we believe that this is the largest ultra-low iron petalite offtake agreement ever signed.

“Sibelco is a global industrial minerals business, with annual turnover of some €3.5 billion. Once in production, Prospect is expected to be the largest ultra-low iron petalite producer in the world.”

Sibelco will use the supplies to serve its customers in the glass and ceramics sectors. Ultra-low iron petalite improves strength, density, acid and heat resistance and reduces water absorption and linear shrinkage.

The Sibelco agreement will account for all of the Arcadia mine’s ultra-low iron petalite output for the first seven years after reaching commercial production.

Prospect can terminate the contract if Sibelco does not buy at least 10,000t in each of two successive quarters for any reason other than global petalite market prices falling below agreed price levels. Sibelco can cancel the contract if Prospect does not meet agreed production levels for two successive quarters.

 

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

Arcadia, a game changing lithium project

Arcadia Lithium Project represents a globally significant hard rock lithium resource. The project is being rapidly developed by Prospect’s experienced team, with the focus on near term production of petalite and spodumene concentrates.

  • 7th largest global hard rock lithium asset
  • Fully permitted to commence production
  • Strong project economics to drive returns for shareholders
  • Diversified markets across Europe, North America and North Asia
  • Close proximity to a skilled labour force and established infrastructure
  • Operating in an established mining jurisdiction, with over 100 years of mining history
  • Offtake agreement and equity investment from Shenzhen Stock Exchange listed lithium chemical converter Sinomine Resources Group
  • Appointed Afreximbank to arrange and manage the primary syndication of a US$143m project finance debt facility