Nouveau Monde Graphite (NYSE: NMG; TSXV: NOU) in collaboration with Mason Graphite (TSXV: LLG) have released the results of a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for a new project covering Mason Graphite’s Lac Guéret deposit, part of the Uatnan mining project located in Quebec.
The PEA, conducted by engineering firms BBA and GoldMinds Geoservices, shows strong economics for NMG’s updated operational parameters and production volumes targeting an output of approximately 500,000 tonnes of graphite concentrate per annum over a 24-year life of mine.
The proposed Uatnan project is currently one of the largest projected natural graphite mines in the world according to the assessment, as battery and electric vehicle manufacturers seek local alternatives for sourcing their graphite-based solutions amid growing demand and a projected deficit of production as of this year, as supported by Benchmark Mineral Intelligence.
Results indicate Uatnan project has an after-tax internal rate of return of 25.9% and a net present value with an 8% discount rate of C$2.1 billion based on current pricing projections for flake concentrate.
NMG says it has extended its vision of responsible mining to the Uatnan project, including transition plans for all-electric operations, advanced environmental management, and proactive First Nation and community engagement, to provide battery and EV manufacturers with responsibly extracted, environmentally transformed and locally sourced graphite-based solutions.
The project supports NMG’s phase 3 expansion plans with updated operational parameters and production volumes in line with the company’s commercial discussions with OEMs and lithium-ion battery cell makers.
“While the core of NMG’s technical team is extremely focused on developing and advancing our phase 2 Matawinie mine and Bécancour battery material projects, it has become increasingly important for our customers and strategic for our shareholders to accelerate the deployment of our phase 3. It is our intention to capture as much market share as possible during this historical period of growth of lithium-ion battery manufacturing in North America and Europe,” said Eric Desaulniers, founder, president and CEO of NMG.
”I am eager to work with the Innu First Nation of Pessamit and stakeholders from the Manicouagan region to revive the mining development of this world-class deposit,” Desaulniers added.