The race for lithium

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Exploration activity is increasing globally, with lithium being one of the key minerals generating interest.

In a report on global exploration trends, S&P Global Market Intelligence revealed that junior companies invested US$157M in the search for lithium in 2017, doubling the amount registered in 2016.


According to Cochilco, by 2021 the projected demand of lithium carbonate will reach a total 372.288t, 58.7% of which (218.633t) correspond to battery purposes.

Chile concentrates around 50% of the world’s lithium reserves and could reach a production level of 147,000t LCE by 2021, an amount which includes the Albemarle (38,000t LCE) and SQM (21,600t LCE) expansion projects.

However, Australia may surpass Chile, given the implementation of the Mt Marion (20,000t LCE) and Mt Cattlin (50,000t LCE) projects, and the construction of the Altura Mining (30,000t LCE) and Pilbara (44,000t LCE) projects.

Despite Australia ́s considerable lithium projects, Chile remains at the centre of attention owing to a series of progressive decisions.


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