Zinnwald becomes sole owner of key German lithium project

The Zinnwald lithium project is located about 35km south-east of Dresden, in eastern Germany. (Image courtesy of Deutsche Lithium.)

Zinnwald Lithium (LON: ZNWD) announced Tuesday that it is buying the 50% of Deutsche Lithium GmbH it didn’t already own for €8.8 million ($10.5 million), gaining full ownership of the namesake, late-stage lithium project.

“When we created Zinnwald Lithium via the reverse takeover of a 50% interest in Deutsche Lithium in October 2020, one of our stated strategic objectives was to consolidate ownership of the late-stage Zinnwald lithium project,” the Germany-focused developer said in the statement.

The project, located in the heart of Europe’s chemical and car industries, about 35km from Dresden, is expected to produce battery grade lithium carbonate, lithium hydroxide and lithium fluoride (Li2CO3, LiOH, LiF) or a combination of them.

The project is expected to produce battery-grade lithium carbonate, lithium hydroxide and lithium fluoride. It also has the potential to produce up to 32,000 tonnes a year of potassium sulphate

Bacanora Lithium (LON: BCN), which currently has a 44.2% stake in Zinnwald Lithium, will see its stake in the project drop to 35.5%, keeping its right to appoint one director to the German company’s board.

Last year, Bacanora sold half of its interest in Deutsche Lithium to Europe-focused miner Erris Resources (LON: ERIS).

The company noted its main focus remains its Sonora project, in Mexico, where site works for bulk earthworks, civil engineering, and pouring foundations have been rescheduled to the fourth quarter of this year over covid-related restrictions.

The company and its 50:50 JV partner Ganfeng Lithium plan to advance the $420 million project to production in 2023, with output estimated at 17,500 tonnes of battery-grade lithium carbonate a year. This will double to 35,000 tonnes a year in a $380 million stage 2 expansion.

Prices for lithium, a key ingredient in electric car batteries, are expected to climb in two years, when shortages in the market caused by curtailed production and halted expansions start to emerge.

The white metal was recently added to the European Union’s list of critical materials in a move that seeks to reduce reliance on imported supply.