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Mining the Northwest: Lithium mine developer seals deal with a global battery customer

Green Technology Metals inks five-year supply deal with LG Energy Solution
Green Technology Metals drilling at its Seymour Project, near Armstrong (Company photo)

An Australian lithium company, developing two deposits in northwestern Ontario, has finalized a supply agreement with one of the world’s largest battery manufacturers.

Green Technology Metals announced it has finalized an off-take agreement with LG Energy Solution of South Korea. It’s the completion of an agreement Green Tech first announced in May.

The deal is to send 25 per cent of its spodumene concentrate production from its Seymour Project for a term of five years. In return, LG Energy invested $20 million (Australian) to become Green Tech’s second largest shareholder.

The Seymour Project, the most advanced of Green Tech’s two deposits, is located at the top end of Lake Nipigon and contains 9.9 million tonnes of lithium oxide. 

Seymour is not yet in commercial production. Green Tech has not released an expected preliminary economic assessment for Seymour showing what a potential mine in the Armstrong area could look like.

According to the development timelines in an investor presentation on the company’s website, construction of a mine at Seymour could begin in mid-2024 once a mine feasibility study is released. 

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Green Tech has identified Thunder Bay as the potential site of a downstream  processing plant. The company plans to be making lithium hydroxide, or battery-grade lithium, in the city by 2027 to serve the North American electric vehicle market.

Should the processing plant come to pass, it could be Thunder Bay’s second lithium conversion facility. Avalon Advanced Materials wants to do the same, hauling in mined lithium from its Separation Rapids Project, north of Kenora. 

Green Tech’s other project is Root, northeast of Sioux Lookout, where a first-ever lithium resource was posted last spring.

The company said in a news release that it’s receiving “strong interest” from major players all along the electric vehicle supply chain and from trading houses seeking to secure near-term supply.

In a statement, Green Tech CEO Luke Cox called formalizing an agreement with a major customer in LG a “tremendous achievement.”

“The agreement delivers strategic alignment within Ontario’s critical minerals supply chain and marks the first definitive lithium off-take agreement for Ontario. Importantly, it builds additional capabilities for GT1 (Green Tech) as we advance our flagship Seymour Project and lithium chemical plant, in line with the company’s strategy to become the first lithium producer in Ontario with vertical integration.”