Kidman Resources Limited has announced an agreement with one of the world’s leading lithium producers, Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile S.A. (SQM) to establish a 50:50 Joint Venture (JV) to develop and operate its world-class Mt Holland Lithium Project as well as to develop a proposed downstream lithium refinery operation in Western Australia.
About 200 jobs will be created during the mine site’s construction phase and approximately 200 full-time jobs once operating.
At the refinery, up to 200 jobs are expected to be created during construction and 180 full-time processing operational jobs.
In consideration for the acquisition of a 50% joint venture interest in the Mt Holland Lithium Project, SQM will make payments of A$146.67 million; comprising a cash payment of A$40 million to Kidman, and a staged payment of A$106.67 million to fund the initial costs of the development of the Mt Holland Lithium Project.
The 50:50 JV will come into effect upon the execution of definitive documents, the satisfaction of the relevant conditions precedent and the payment of the full A$146.67 million by SQM.
Kidman will also have an option to participate for up to a 50% interest in a proposed refinery to produce lithium carbonate / hydroxide that will be underpinned by the Earl Grey resource at Mt Holland. Kidman will retain all gold rights at the Mt Holland project.
Mt Holland hosts the Earl Grey lithium deposit, which contains a mineral resource of 128 million tonnes at 1.44% Li2O for 1.84 million tonnes of lithium oxide. A feasibility study into the development of Earl Grey is well advanced and a further study into a proposed refinery to produce lithium carbonate or hydroxide has commenced.