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Ewoyaa lithium project, Ghana – update

Location map of the Ewoyaa lithium project

Photo by Atlantic Minerals

1st December 2023

By: Sheila Barradas

Creamer Media Research Coordinator & Senior Deputy Editor

     

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Name of the Project
Ewoyaa lithium project.

Location
Ghana.

Project Owner/s
Aim-listed lithium explorer and developer Atlantic Minerals. Piedmont has an earn-in right of 50% of Atlantic’s Ghanaian projects, including Ewoyaa, and the company holds a 10% equity interest in lithium explorer Atlantic Lithium.

Project Description
Ewoyaa has probable reserves of 25.6-million tonnes grading 1.22% lithium oxide. Total mineral resources are estimated at 35.3-million tonnes grading 1.25% lithium oxide.

Over the 12-year life-of-mine (LoM), the project is expected to produce 3.58-million tonnes a year of 6% and 5.5% spodumene concentrate, as well as 4.7-million tonnes of secondary product as a by-product of dense-media separation (DMS).

Development involves the opencut mining of several lithium-bearing pegmatite deposits, conventional DMS processing and supporting infrastructure.

Potential Job Creation
Not stated.

Net Present Value/Internal Rate of Return
The project has an after-tax net present value, at an 8% discount rate, of $1.5-billion and an internal rate of return of 105%, with a payback of 19 months.

Capital Expenditure
$185-million.

Planned Start/End Date
Production of spodumene concentrate and secondary product are targeted for the second quarter of 2025.

Latest Developments
Atlantic Lithium has announced that multiple broad intervals of visible spodumene have been observed in drilling outside of the current mineral resource estimate (MRE) at Ewoyaa, significantly increasing the potential for a resource upgrade.

There is also the longest reported continuous pegmatite interval in the 2023 drilling programme to date – 106 m in hole GRC1020 from 6 m at the Dog-Leg extension target on the northern tip of the Ewoyaa main deposit.

Visible coarse-grained spodumene fragment intervals have been reported at shallow depths in three holes.

Coarse-grained, P1-type spodumene pegmatite is preferred for the dense-media separation (DMS) process flowsheet considered in the definitive feasibility study on the project.

Resource drilling is ongoing, with completion of the enhanced 26 500 m planned programme targeted for the second quarter of 2024.

Meanwhile, Atlantic Lithium is making "excellent" progress in advancing toward shovel-readiness at the Ewoyaa project.

The permitting phase is well under way, while there is active engagement with local stakeholders within and surrounding the project's lease area, the company has reported. In October, Atlantic Lithium held the inaugural Community Consultative Committee meeting, whereby it welcomed an open discussion of how the project can benefit the local community.

Atlantic has been awarded a bulk customer permit with regard to the electricity requirements at Ewoyaa. This is expected to deliver a 30% to 50% overall power cost reduction for the project.

Further, advanced discussions for the award of the engineering, procurement, construction and management contract for the main processing plant and all nonprocessing infrastructure are ongoing.

Atlantic will soon start the tender stage for the procurement of a mobile crusher to feed the modular DMS unit, while the tender process to appoint a mining contractor is under way.

The company also expects to award a contract to divert the transmission lines crossing the project site in the second quarter of 2024.

Work is also under way with engineering, procurement and construction firm Mincore to assess the potential of establishing a downstream lithium conversion plant in Ghana, as agreed under the terms of the grant of the mining lease for the project.

A flotation scoping study has also been finalised. The study supports the viability of processing the fines and the middlings materials through flotation, as well as the potential to achieve significantly enhanced recovery of the P2 finer-grained pegmatite material.

"The results firmly confirm the company's case for the inclusion of a flotation circuit, which will operate independently and downstream from the main DMS plant. Construction and integration of the circuit will be carried out post the main processing plant achieving a 2.7-million-tonne annualised steady-state throughput," CEO Keith Muller has said.

In line with the terms agreed under the grant of the mining lease, work on the feldspar and downstream conversion studies is progressing at pace. Concurrently, discussions are under way with several parties regarding the commercial contracts that are critical to the development of the project, with updates expected on each of these over the coming months.

Atlantic expects to make a final investment decision at Ewoyaa once it receives approval from the Ghana Environmental Protection Agency and is granted a mine operating permit

Key Contracts, Suppliers and Consultants
None stated.

Contact Details for Project Information
Atlantic Minerals, tel +61 2 8072 0640 or email info@atlanticlithium.com.au.

Edited by Martin Zhuwakinyu
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor

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