(Yicai Global) April 11 -- An investment fund based in Shenzhen, the southeastern Guangdong province, will invest in a battery-grade lithium carbonate project with an annual output of 40,000-ton in Taixing, East China's Jiangsu province, in order to fully seize the market opportunities brought about by the development of lithium battery industry.
Guo Ao Mining Investment International Ltd., in partnership with the Suzhou-based New Sea Union Telecom Technology Co., signed the relevant agreement with the management committee of Taixing economic development zone, New Sea Union said in a statement yesterday.
The total project investment is estimated to be CNY2 billion (USD318 million), it said, adding the first-phase will see 20,000 tons of battery-grade lithium carbonate produced annually. It will start production within 18 months of the start of the project which will be determined according to market conditions, said the statement.
The Suzhou-based company previously invested CNY30 million to acquire a 5.66 percent stake in Guo Ao Mining last December. Both companies also tied up to jointly invest CNY500 million in a lithium extraction project in Quebec, Canada.
The two parties will use CNY300 million to build a spodumene processing plant with a processing capacity of 1 million tons of raw stone a year, they said in February. The remaining CNY200 million will be used to build a 20,500-tons-per-year lithium product processing plant in China, for completion by the end of next year.
Guo Ao investment fund holds a 60-percent stake in the Molblan lithium project, which has a proven reserve of 4.72 million tons. Its main product, spodumene is an important raw material for industrial grade lithium products.
Founded in 1997, New Sea Union's two main businesses are new energy and communications products. Its main products include batteries for new energy vehicles, light-emitting diode, LED, chip products, communication hardware and software services.
The company did clarify in the statement whether the Taixing lithium carbonate project is the same one as that of its domestic investment plan it announced in February.