Eramet plans more lithium plants in South America – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – May 31, 2022)

France’s Eramet said on Tuesday it aims to expand its lithium footprint in South America, where it is already developing a production plant, as part of the miner’s strategy to shift towards minerals used to power electric vehicles (EVs).

The company owns a large lithium deposit in the Centenario-Ratones salt flat located in north-west Argentina, which attracted last year Chinese steel group Tsingshan as a partner. This agreement covers the plant construction, with commissioning scheduled for early 2024.

The project is expected to produce 24,000 tonnes of Lithium Carbonate Equivalent (LCE) by the second half of 2025 and run at full capacity from 2026 onwards. Eramet is also keen to explore opportunities in Chile or Bolivia to deploy its brine extraction technology as an environmentally sustainable route for lithium production.

Argentina sits atop the “lithium triangle” a region shared with neighbouring Chile and Bolivia, which contains nearly 56% of the world’s resources of the metal, according to the most recent figures from the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

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