Lithium is an essential ingredient in lithium-ion batteries for hybrid and electric cars, as well as rechargeable power for laptops, phones and other devices. It is the lightest of all metals, making it well suited for use in everything from pacemakers to jets.

Lithium does not occur on its own in nature but is found combined with other minerals. At our Rincon Lithium Project in Argentina, we have the capability to extract and produce battery-grade lithium carbonate from raw brine. At our Jadar project, we discovered lithium in a new mineral in the Jadar Valley in Serbia, now known as jadarite.

Lithium is part of our portfolio of materials essential to a low-carbon future. Lithium is a key element needed for low-carbon technologies including the electrification of transport, large-scale batteries and energy storage. Double digit growth in lithium demand is forecast over the next decade.

Without lithium ion batteries you won’t have rapid mass adoption of electric vehicles or energy storage. And without the lithium, cobalt, nickel, graphite anode and manganese supply chains to feed these battery plants, you won’t have lithium ion batteries.”

- Simon Moores, Managing Director, Benchmark Mineral Intelligence

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Partnerships across the value chain

Partnerships and collaboration are essential to bringing lithium from mine to market. For example, we are investing in European-based battery technology and manufacturing company InoBat Auto to support the development of a battery ecosystem in Europe – spanning R&D, lithium mining, battery manufacturing and recycling.

InoBat has a battery research and development facility and pilot plant under development in Slovakia and is actively pursuing plans to build a number of gigafactories, including one in Serbia where our proposed Jadar lithium mine is located.

We support industry-wide initiatives aimed at building a competitive, sustainable and innovative value chain in Europe, such as the European Battery Alliance and the European Raw Materials Alliance. We are also members of the Global Battery Alliance, a public-private collaboration to help establish a sustainable battery value chain.

Powering everyday life

Lithium is a key component in the batteries that power your smart phone, electric vehicle and gaming controller.

Helping to store clean energy

Lithium is used in batteries to store the power generated from wind turbines and solar photovoltaic cells.

Cradle to cradle recycling

According to Canadian Mining, around 95% of the cobalt, lithium and graphite in batteries can be reused. We have formed a partnership with InoBat to accelerate the establishment of a “cradle to cradle” battery manufacturing and recycling value chain in Serbia.

Brightening up our world

Used in ceramic glazes, lithium can improve viscosity, improve transparency, increase ceramic strength and even brighten up the colours of the glazes.

The new mineral, jadarite


A material for the future

A vital component for clean technologies such as electric vehicles and battery storage, lithium will play an essential role in the transition to a low carbon economy. Double digit growth in lithium demand is forecast over the next decade.

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Rincon is a large, undeveloped, lithium brine project located in the heart of the lithium triangle in the Salta Province of Argentina, an emerging hub for greenfield projects. A long-life, scalable resource capable of producing battery-grade lithium carbonate from raw brine, the project will help us deliver this vital resource to the global energy industry while meeting our commitment to decarbonise our operations by 2050.

We are advancing the 3,000 tonne per year battery-grade lithium carbonate plant starter plant, however the full definition of the project, changes to scope and higher inflation have led to an increase in the capital estimate to $335 million (from $140 million). The learnings and design improvements will be carried over to the full-scale project. First saleable production is now expected at the end of 2024 (previously in the first half of 2024). Studies are continuing on the full-scale plant, which will have benefits of economies of scale, with the capital intensity, based on current stage of studies, forecast to be in line with regional lithium industry benchmarks.

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The Jadar project in Serbia is one of the world’s largest greenfield lithium projects. The scale and high-grade nature of the Jadar deposit provides the potential for a mine to supply lithium into the electric vehicle value chain for decades.

The Board committed funding in July 2021, subject to receiving all relevant approvals, permits and licences. We are focused on consultation with all stakeholders to explore all options following the Government of Serbia's cancellation of the Spatial Plan in January 2022.

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