Hastings Technology Metals has entered a third memorandum of understanding with Qiandong Rare Earth Group (GQD) for the future supply of mixed rare earth carbonate (MREC) from its Yangibana project in Western Australia.
Under the MOU the companies outlined plans to enter into a binding commercial offtake agreement for the sale, with a formal offtake contract to be made within the next 12 months.
Hastings executive chairman Charles Lew said this third MOU for an offtake agreement reinforces the strong market demand for rare earth minerals.
He added that production samples for the pilot test work earlier in the year contained over 40 per cent neodymium and Praseodymium (NdPr) – which are used in car manufacturing.
“The trend toward the electrification of transportation will lead to an increase in the demand for NdPr through the next decade and beyond, and Hastings will be a new source of NdPr to the market,” Lew said.
Hastings is currently developing a rare earths mine and processing plant at Yangibana located in the Gascoyne region of WA. The plant has an estimated annual production quantity of 15,000 tonnes and expected to begin production of MREC in 2019.
Any commercial offtake agreement is dependent on Hastings starting operations and production of MREC from the Yangibana mine.