Listed developer and producer Piedmont Lithium (ASX:PLL) is looking to earn a higher stake in Atlantic Lithium’s (ASX:A11) Ewoyaa Lithium Project in Ghana, Africa.
Piedmont, which has a $1.30 billion market capitalisation, says it will increase its stake in the project as part of a staged investment agreement to earn a 50% equity interest in Atlantic Lithium’s Ghanaian lithium portfolio.
Under the terms of the project agreement, Piedmont has exercised its option to acquire a 22.5% interest in Ewoyaa, having already funded the completion of the project’s Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS).
Now, the company plans to provide an additional US$70 million toward Ewoyaa development capital to acquire a further 27.5% interest in the project.
However, the additional funding remains subject to the receipt of final government and regulatory approvals for the project.
Piedmont expects to fund its contributions toward the project development through proceeds from the sale of lithium concentrate from its offtake agreement with North American Lithium.
The company also notes it is entitled to purchase 50% of lithium concentrate production at Ewoyaa on a market-based pricing mechanism for the life of the mine.
This offtake is being planned as feedstock for its proposed 30,000-metric-tonne-per-year lithium hydroxide conversion facility in Tennessee, US, according to Piedmont.
Commenting on the development funding, Piedmont President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Keith Phillips says: “We are pleased to help advance the progression of Ewoyaa as a key part of Piedmont Lithium’s global portfolio and the expected feedstock for our planned lithium hydroxide conversion facility in Tennessee.
“We look forward to continuing our work with Atlantic Lithium to support the Project toward first production, currently targeted for 2025“
Our partners at Atlantic Lithium have made tremendous progress, with positive project economics recently published in a definitive feasibility study and minerals lease discussions that are progressing with Ghana’s Minerals Commission. We look forward to continuing our work with Atlantic Lithium to support the Project toward first production, currently targeted for 2025.”
This decision by Piedmont comes following Atlantic’s announcement earlier this week (15 August 2023), in which it reported it had signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the University of Mines and Technology (UMaT) in Tarkwa.
Atlantic reported this partnership was entered into to investigate the viability of producing feldspar feedstock as a by-product of spodumene concentrate production at Ewoyaa.
Piedmont Lithium is an ASX-listed developer and producer working to develop a ‘world-class, multi-asset, integrated’ lithium business focused on enabling the transition to a net-zero world and the creation of a clean energy economy in North America.
The Ewoyaa project is located in Ghana and represents Atlantic Lithium’s flagship project. The project is a ‘significant’ lithium spodumene pegmatite discovery on track to becoming Ghana’s first lithium-producing mine.
Write to Adam Drought at Mining.com.au
Images: Atlantic Lithium