Australia’s lithium mine Pilbara Minerals announced on the 26th that it has agreed with South Korean steel giant POSCO to establish a joint venture in South Korea to process lithium hydroxide. Pilbara’s share price surged over 9%.
The total project cost of the new production facility is expected to be up to $ 750 million. With the global shift to electric vehicles (EVs), the demand for lithium used in EV batteries is skyrocketing.
Pilbara will hold an 18% stake in the joint venture and will be given the option to raise its stake to 30% 18 months after production begins. Construction of a new plant is expected to begin by March next year and will start operations in late 2023.
POSCO has not responded to requests for comment.
Pilbara plans to supply 315,000 tons of spodumene, the raw material for lithium, to the joint venture facility annually.