Epanko graphite project, Tanzania – update

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8th December 2023

By: Sheila Barradas

Creamer Media Research Coordinator & Senior Deputy Editor


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Name of the Project
Epanko graphite project.


Project Owner/s
Duma TanzGraphite will develop and operate Epanko, with an 84% interest held by EcoGraf (formerly Kibaran Resources) and a 16% free-carried interest held by the Tanzania government.

Project Description
EcoGraf has undertaken a predevelopment programme on the Epanko project to build on the extensive bankable feasibility study (BFS) completed in 2017.

The predevelopment programme has increased production from 60 000 t/y in the 2017 BFS to 73 000 t/y in the “oxide first” strategy.

The project is forecast to expand over time to meet the growing market demand for battery graphite, and is expected to operate for 40 to 50 years. Epanko has the potential to be expanded to 300 000 t/y of production, based on an assessment of current mineral resources estimated at 128.2-million tonnes grading 7.4% total graphitic carbon over an 18-year mine life.

Potential Job Creation
The project is expected to employ about 300 Tanzanians and will create up to 4 500 indirect jobs through the local supply of goods and services.

Net Present Value/Internal Rate of Return
The project has a pretax net present value, at a 10% discount rate, of $211-million and an internal rate of return of 38.9%, with a 3.4-year payback in the 2017 BFS. The predevelopment programme estimates a pretax net present value, at a 10% discount rate, of $348-million and an internal rate of return of 36%.

Capital Expenditure
Preproduction capital has increased from $88.9-million in the 2017 BFS to $134-million in the predevelopment study.

Planned Start/End Date
Not stated.

Latest Developments
EcoGraf is advancing towards securing $105-million for the development of the project.

The company says the German government has confirmed the project’s eligibility for cover for the untied loan guarantee (UFK) scheme, based on the support of German offtakers for the initial 73 000 t/y Epanko development.

The UFK programme incentivises the development of key projects that can provide a long-term supply of critical minerals for German industry.

Subject to meeting credit criteria, loan funding can be provided under the programme for terms longer than are generally available from commercial lenders, which provides increased financial flexibility for new developments during ramp-up and operation.

EcoGraf has indicated that the time of the agreement is highly favourable for Epanko, as China is set to impose graphite export controls from December 1.

The company states that demand for natural flake graphite is set to significantly outstrip available supply over the next decade. Natural graphite demand is expected to increase from 1.1-million tonnes in 2022 to more than four-million tonnes a year by 2030, leading to a market shortfall from 2026 and supporting the introduction of Epanko’s graphite products.

EcoGraf is also planning to develop graphite mechanical shaping facilities, in Tanzania, to supply feedstock for its future active anode material facilities in key global battery markets.

Key Contracts, Suppliers and Consultants
None stated.

Contact Details for Project Information
EcoGraf, tel +61 8 6424 9000 or email

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter




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