Orion Minerals

Platinum Group Metals has reported its financial results for the three months ended 30 November, 2020 and provides a summary of recent events and outlook.

Platinum Group Metals is focused on advancing the palladium dominant Waterberg Project located on the Northern Limb of the Bushveld Complex in South Africa.

The Waterberg Project is planned as a fully mechanised, shallow, decline access palladium, platinum, gold and rhodium (4E) mine and is projected to be one of the largest and lowest cost underground platinum group metals (PGMs) mines globally.

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Platinum Group Metals’ near-term objectives are to achieve the grant of a mining right for the palladium dominant Waterberg Project and complete construction funding and concentrate offtake arrangements.

Related: DFS confirms world-class palladium deposit in South Africa

The Company is also advancing an initiative through Lion Battery Technologies Inc. (Lion) in collaboration with Anglo American Platinum Limited (Anglo) and Florida International University (FIU).

Lion was jointly formed in 2019 by Platinum Group and Anglo to accelerate the development of next-generation lithium battery technology using platinum and palladium.

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The Company’s primary business objective is to advance the palladium dominant Waterberg Project to a development and construction decision. The positive results of the Waterberg DFS provide a solid value assessment for the Waterberg Project.

The long-term market outlook for the metals to be produced at Waterberg remains positive. The Implementation Work Program completed on September 15, 2020, and paid for substantially by Implats, focussed on project optimization, operational readiness and risk mitigation.

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The Implementation Work Program confirmed important aspects of the DFS, established mitigation approaches for certain possible risks, and identified several upside opportunities.

Platinum Group Metals’ will continue working towards its next major milestone; obtaining a mining right for the Waterberg Project. Waterberg JV Co. applied for a mining right in August 2018 and an environmental authorization in July of 2019.

Detailed consultation with communities, local municipalities, the Limpopo Provincial government and South African national authorities is complete for the mining right application.

An environmental authorisation was granted on 12 August, 2020, subject to a public notice period and finalization of issues raised by affected parties, which process was completed on 10 November, 2020.

In addition to discussions with Implats, the Company and Waterberg JV Co. have begun a process to assess commercial alternatives for mine development financing and concentrate offtake, subject to Implats’ right to match offtake proposals. Several parties are currently in discussions with the Company.

The Company’s battery technology initiative through Lion represents a new research, innovation and commercialization opportunity in the high-profile lithium battery field using palladium and platinum.

Recent laboratory research by Lion has discovered innovations that are in line with our technical objectives and are now covered in granted patents and patent applications filed by FIU on behalf of Lion.

The investment in Lion creates a potential vertical integration with electric vehicles, which may otherwise be a potential threat to the platinum and palladium market.

The Company will follow government health directives in the months ahead. The health and safety of employees is a priority. The Company plans to drive ahead with its core business objectives while reducing costs where possible in this period of market uncertainty.