Firefinch has received a letter of non-objection from the Malian Government to the JV transaction between Firefinch and Jiangxi Ganfeng Lithium who intend to develop and operate the Goulamina Lithium Project.
In considering the Goulamina Transaction, The Malian Minister of Mines, Energy and Water highlighted the significant advantages for Mali:
“The Goulamina Transaction will materialise the development of the first producing spodumene concentrate operation in West Africa, and on the Malian territory.
“It will allow Mali to attract new investments focused on metals used for the manufacture of batteries and the field of renewable energies. In addition, as part of the transaction, there is a focus on the creation of local jobs, the establishment of local infrastructure and the rapid monitoring of community engagement plans to
meet the needs of local communities, which also aligns with the Malian Mining Code in terms of local content.”
The final condition precedent is the receipt of Chinese regulatory approvals which will allow the transfer of the Exploitation Licence for the Goulamina Lithium Project to the JV company.
The Company’s advice is that this is imminent.
On satisfaction of the conditions precedent, Ganfeng will provide the first US$39 million cash investment for the Goulamina project, with the remaining US$91 million to be received following the Goulamina Final Investment Decision (FID).
As previously announced on August 2021, Firefinch and Ganfeng are working collaboratively to fast-track an update of the October 2020 Definitive Feasibility Study.
The Updated DFS will enable FID, Ganfeng’s second cash investment of US$91 million, and subsequent debt funding of up to US$64 million, all to be received earlier than initially anticipated. The Company anticipates completion of the Updated DFS and the FID during the December quarter 2021.
Firefinch Managing Director, Dr Michael Anderson commented:
“The support of the Malian Government and local community is key to the success of Goulamina and we are delighted to receive their formal support of our plans to develop this world class project.
Goulamina will be the next large scale global lithium hard rock project to enter production, and the first of its kind in West Africa, with production targeted for 2023.
“Together with our partner, Ganfeng, the world’s largest lithium chemicals producer, we are working to expand the scale and production capacity of Goulamina and look forward to updating shareholders on the revised DFS in the coming weeks.”