An exploration company is one step closer to building a US$141 million (A$202.8 million) mineral production facility in southwest Australia.
GR Engineering recently finished an engineering study for Kibaran Resources’ Kwinana Graphite Plant in the Kwinana Industrial Area, 30km south of Perth.
The plant involves creating a facility capable of processing raw battery graphite feed stock independently of the Epanko Graphite Project still being planned for Tanzania. The facility will incorporate Kibaran’s proprietary purification process, which does not using highly toxic hydrofluoric acid that is still found at graphite processing plants in China.
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4ha site secured
The Western Australian Government-funded LandCorp has confirmed a 4 hectare site will be made available for the new plant in the industrial area.
Once in production, the project will help Kibaran consider potential downstream processing graphite opportunities within Tanzania and the East African region.
Global demand expected to jump
Global demand for battery graphite is expected to jump and Kibaran plans to take advantage of this opportunity by establishing multiple battery graphite manufacturing facilities across the Asia-Pacific, Australia and Europe.
The plant is likely to have an up-front capital cost of US$22.8 million (A$32.8 million) for the initial 5000 tonnes per annum (tpa), and a further US$49.2 million (A$70.8 million) to expand production to 20,000 tpa of battery-grade graphite.
The proponent will try to secure funding and environmental approvals, hoping to making a final investment decision in the first half of calendar 2020.