Ganfeng Lithium , one of the world’s biggest lithium companies, said on Tuesday it would set up a plant to produce 50,000 tonnes per year of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) in its home province of Jiangxi.
The announcement comes as Ganfeng embarks on a plan to lift capacity roughly fivefold to no less than 600,000 tonnes of LCE annually. After a three-year downturn, demand for lithium, used in electric vehicle batteries, is surging again as the world’s transition to a low-carbon economy picks up pace.
Ganfeng will set up a joint venture company in the city of Fengcheng for its latest plant, which will convert spodumene – a mineral mined for its lithium content – into lithium battery materials, according to a filing to the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.
It will be built in two phases, the filing said, without providing a time frame for construction or specifying the amount of investment involved.
The first phase will have annual output of 25,000 tonnes of lithium hydroxide, a chemical used in nickel-rich batteries, the filing said. It did not give information on the second phase.
The plant “will further expand the company’s production scale and market share of lithium salt products,” as well as improve core competitiveness and profitability, Ganfeng said.
(By Tom Daly; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)