QUEBEC CITY, QUEBEC--(Marketwired - Nov 2, 2017) - Nemaska Lithium Inc. ("Nemaska Lithium" or the "Corporation") (NMX.TO)(NMKEF) announced today an update on the lithium hydroxide production coming from its Phase 1 Plant.
Phase 1 Plant Thermal Roasting Commissioning
Nemaska Lithium has produced an inventory of lithium sulfate from spodumene concentrate coming from the Whabouchi Mine. The processing of this lithium sulfate into battery grade lithium hydroxide commenced last week at the Phase 1 Plant. The first tonne of this lithium hydroxide is expected to be shipped to a customer in November 2017. This milestone will mark the beginning of the qualification of Nemaska Lithium as a new supplier of lithium salts for the lithium ion battery market.
Lithium Hydroxide Production from Customer Lithium Sulfate
In addition, Nemaska Lithium has shipped another 4 tonnes of battery grade lithium hydroxide derived from a customer's lithium sulfate solution as the source of raw material. To date, Nemaska Lithium has produced and delivered 24 tonnes of battery grade lithium hydroxide for this customer who is using the lithium hydroxide in the production of cathodes for lithium ion batteries.
Guy Bourassa, President and CEO of Nemaska Lithium commented, "We have delivered 24 tonnes of battery grade lithium hydroxide coming from a customer's sulfate to date, which is an important technical achievement. To date, no other new comer to the market has produced battery grade lithium hydroxide. I am confident that we will deliver battery grade lithium hydroxide coming from our own ore to customers in the near term. The Phase 1 Plant is a small scale commercial plant which generates the quality of products we expect to produce once we have our commercial mine and processing facility up and running."
Nemaska Lithium has identified numerous potential clients which have requested lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate samples from the Phase 1 Plant. Over the course of the next few months, Nemaska Lithium will continue processing spodumene concentrate to produce sufficient samples of lithium salts to send to potential clients who have asked to evaluate and qualify products.
Project Financing and Timeline
As stated in its press release of October 10, 2017, Nemaska Lithium is currently evaluating a number of financing alternatives for the project including debt (from private lenders as well as traditional large banks) and/or a strategic investment either at the Corporation or the project level.
"This is our top priority and we are weighing the merits of a number of options to determine the best path forward. Our timeline for this project remains the same, being 9 to 12 months for construction and commissioning of the mine and 18 months for construction and commissioning of the chemical plant once we have our project financing in place."
About Nemaska Lithium
Nemaska Lithium intends to become a lithium hydroxide and lithium carbonate supplier to the emerging lithium battery market that is largely driven by electric vehicles, cell phones, tablets and other consumer products. The Corporation is developing in Quebec one of the most important spodumene lithium hard rock deposit in the world, both in volume and grade. The spodumene concentrate produced at Nemaska Lithium's Whabouchi mine will be shipped to the Corporation's lithium compounds processing plant to be built in Shawinigan, Quebec. This plant will transform spodumene concentrate into high purity lithium hydroxide and carbonate using the proprietary methods developed by the Corporation, and for which the Corporation holds nine issued patents and several patent applications that are pending in different countries, covering different aspects and improvements of its proprietary technology for preparing high purity lithium hydroxide and carbonate.
All statements, other than statements of historical fact, contained in this press release including, but not limited to, (i) the shipping, in November 2017, of the first tonne of lithium hydroxide (from concentrate) to mark the beginning of the qualification of Nemaska Lithium as a new supplier of lithium salts, (ii) the expectation to eventually produce, at the commercial mine and processing facility, the same quality of products as that generated from the Phase 1 Plant, (iii) the production of sufficient samples of lithium salts to send to potential clients, (iv) the qualifying of the Corporation's products with customers, (v) the selection of the best financing scenario among a number of options, (vi) the timeline for the Corporation's project, being 9 to 12 months for construction and commissioning of the mine and 18 months for construction and commissioning of the chemical plant after having secured the project financing, and (vii) generally, the above "About Nemaska Lithium" paragraph which essentially describe the Corporation's outlook constitute ''forward-looking information'' or ''forward-looking statements'' within the meaning of certain securities laws, and are based on expectations, estimates and projections as of the time of this press release. Forward-looking statements are necessarily based upon a number of estimates and assumptions that, while considered reasonable by the Corporation as of the time of such statements, are inherently subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties and contingencies. These estimates and assumptions may prove to be incorrect.
Many of these uncertainties and contingencies can directly or indirectly affect, and could cause, actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in any forward-looking statements. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Forward-looking statements are provided for the purpose of providing information about management's expectations and plans relating to the future. The Corporation disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements or to explain any material difference between subsequent actual events and such forward-looking statements, except to the extent required by applicable law.