AVZ Minerals has been advised by lawyers acting for Yibin Tianyi Lithium that it has withdrawn its proposed investment application in the Company lodged with Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) on 27 November 2019 following advice that its application would be rejected by the Federal Government.

It is understood the Federal Government advised Yibin Tianyi that its $A14.1 million investment in the Company, representing 11.77% of the Company post investment would be “contrary to the national interest”.

The Company understands the Federal Government believed AVZ’s forecast production of 87,500 tpa of lithium carbonate equivalent from operations planned to commence in 2022 was contrary to the national interest of “growing Australia’s critical minerals sector”.

Accordingly, Yibin Tianyi’s proposed A$14.1million strategic investment in the Company as announced on 11 November 20191 will not proceed.

Subsequently, Yibin Tianyi has engaged with AVZ to negotiate alternative methods of investment in order to advance the Company’s aspirations of being a producer of lithium products from the Manono Lithium and Tin Project (Manono Project).

AVZ also advises Yibin Tianyi are still willing to progress the current advanced negotiations for finalising an offtake agreement for lithium products from Manono.

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AVZ MD, Nigel Ferguson, says:

“Naturally, we are disappointed with the outcome of the FIRB application process but will double our efforts and commitment to bring our world-class Manono Project into production.”

“This week’s release of our highly positive DFS has generated significant interest from a wide range of investors and potential financiers, and I am confident we will secure the necessary short term funding as well as longer-term debt and equity finance on highly competitive terms.”