Aim-listed lithium explorer and developer Atlantic lithium, which is developing its Ewoyaa lithium project, in Ghana, incurred a loss after income tax of $34.65-million for the 2022 financial year ended June 30.
At period’s end, the developer held A$23.9-million in cash, up from the A$19.1-million held as at June 30, 2021.
Exploration and evaluation expenditure held on the balance sheet during the period was A$11.1-million, down from the A$51.4-million of the corresponding 2021 period.
The developer is working towards targeted first production of lithium spodumene concentrate in the third quarter of 2024, subject to it getting a mining licence for the Ewoyaa project, which currently comprises 560 km2 of granted and under application tenure through direct applications and earn-in agreements.
Atlantic Lithium executive chairperson Neil Herbert says that with the company successfully demerging from its gold assets means it can purely focus on its lithium portfolio.
Atlantic Lithium is also developing a lithium pegmatite project in Côte d'Ivoire
During the period under review, the company also increased Ewoyaa’s mineral resource through an updated pre-feasibility study (PFS), to 30.1-million t spodumene-rich lithium pegmatite deposit at Ewoyaa grading at 1.26% lithium oxide. As such, the project is to become Ghana's first lithium mine.
This increase in the Joint Ore Reserves Committee-compliant mineral resource represents a 42% increase on previous estimates.
“The PFS . . . outlines a robust 2-million t/y operation, generating in excess of $4.84-billion in revenues over a 12.5-year mine life, with payback within as little as 20 weeks,” he says.
Herbert adds that Atlantic lithium has long been confident of the considerable profitability that Ewoyaa offers, and that the PFS provides valuable third-party validation thereof. “Ongoing drilling is intended to grow the resource further.”
In terms of fund raising, Atlantic Lithium also secured an agreement in the financial year with fellow lithium developer Piedmont Lithium to fund Ewoyaa to production through a staged earn-in of $103-million.
He says this agreement recognises Ewoyaa as an industry-leading lithium asset, removes funding risks for Atlantic Lithium’s shareholders and enables the company to invest in growth. “It is a major endorsement of the company's strategy to date.”
Also during the period under review, Atlantic Lithium was granted a Cape Coast exploration license in Ghana, providing it access to 139.23 km2 of highly prospective lithium tenure adjacent to its existing portfolio, thereby increasing the developer’s Ghana Cape Coast lithium portfolio to 560 km2.
After periods end, Atlantic Lithium reported that its pre-feasibility study indicates revenues in excess of $4.84-billion in revenues over a 12.5-year mine life.
Post-periods end, the developer was also added to the official list of the ASX, under the ticker A11.
Further, Herbert notes that its demerger of gold assets is intended to enable the company to focus time, resources and effort on realising the significant potential value, which was not being fully appreciated, of the company’s lithium assets. It is clear that this strategy has begun to deliver the intended results.
“Atlantic Lithium is now in an excellent position to advance Ewoyaa through studies to reach production, and, in doing so, return significant value to the company's shareholders and also long-term benefits to all stakeholders,” he says.
Going forward, Atlantic Lithium plans to further increase the resource at Ewoyaa, with an update expected later this year or at the beginning of 2023, before delivering a definitive feasibility study in 2023.