Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe Announces Plans for Lithium Sulphate Plant

Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe plans to build a lithium sulphate plant, aligning with Zimbabwe's push for sustainable growth and value addition, despite global market challenges.

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Quadri Adejumo
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Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe Announces Plans for Lithium Sulphate Plant

Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe Announces Plans for Lithium Sulphate Plant

Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe (PLZ), a lithium producer in Zimbabwe, has announced its intention to construct a state-of-the-art lithium sulphate plant in the country. The move is seen as a demonstration of PLZ's commitment to Zimbabwe's sustainable growth plans and compliance with local processing rules that require lithium miners to move beyond producing concentrates and start producing battery-grade lithium.

PLZ, which was acquired by Huayou Cobalt in 2021, currently produces about 280,000 ounces of lithium concentrate annually and aims to double this output in 2024. However, the company's expansion plans may be impacted by falling global lithium prices. Despite industry doubts about the viability of producing battery-grade lithium in Zimbabwe, the government has mandated miners to set up processing plants in the country and has banned the export of lithium ore.

Why this matters: The establishment of a lithium sulphate plant by PLZ signifies a step towards value addition and local processing of lithium in Zimbabwe. This aligns with the government's push for sustainable growth and could potentially boost the country's economy, despite challenges posed by global market conditions.

During PLZ's recent second anniversary celebration, the company's general manager, Henry Zhu, emphasized the importance of adaptability and resilience in the lithium industry. Zhu highlighted how PLZ has weathered challenges over the past two years and emerged stronger. He announced that the company is currently conducting feasibility studies for the lithium sulphate plant, which will enhance its production capabilities and contribute to the overall well-being of Zimbabwe's economy and sustainable development.

The event also recognized 30 employees for their achievements, with the workers' committee commending their dedication, innovation, and commitment to the company's success. Zhu expressed appreciation for the company's journey and reaffirmed PLZ's commitment to exceeding the expectations of its stakeholders.

PLZ's plans for the lithium sulphate plant come amidst challenges in Zimbabwe's mineral exports, which are expected to decline further this year due to global economic headwinds, according to the World Bank. "We have faced challenges in the past two years but have persevered, adapted, and thrived," Zhu stated, highlighting the company's resilience in the face of adversity.

Key Takeaways

  • Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe to build lithium sulphate plant in Zimbabwe.
  • PLZ aims to double lithium concentrate output to 560,000 oz by 2024.
  • Zimbabwe mandates lithium miners to set up processing plants, bans ore exports.
  • PLZ's plant aligns with Zimbabwe's sustainable growth plans, despite global challenges.
  • PLZ celebrates 2nd anniversary, recognizes employee achievements and resilience.