Tawana completes funding for Bald Hill lithium mine

Drill rig at Bald Hill. Image: Tawana Resources

Up-and-coming Australian company Tawana Resources — one of the largest movers in capital growth according to Deloitte’s WA Index top 100 list from Diggers & Dealers 2017 — has finalised funding for its Bald Hill lithium and tantalum prospect.

Tawana holds 50 per cent of lithium rights from the mine; a feasibility study conducted in July 2017 confirmed up to 1.2 million tonnes a year of lithium at the mine.

Due to commence early next year, with a tentative shipping target of first quarter 2018, Tawana today announced the Eastern Goldfields-located project will commence thanks to a $25 million equity and debt package with German company Weier Antriebe und Energietechnik GmbH, a subsidiary of Chinese lithium battery specialists Jiangte Special Electric Motor Co. (JSMC).

“We are exceptionally placed to benefit from the long-term demand dynamics for the lithium sector,” said Tawana managing director Mark Calderwood in reference to the recent boom in lithium-hungry electric vehicles.

“The raw materials required for Li-ion and other next-generation batteries have become a critical focus for the global automotive sector, who wish to secure these materials from high-quality, clean, reliable and low-risk supply chains.”

The $25 million fee is split between $20 million in equity investment and $5 million in loans. Tawana’s ambitious project is being supported by offtake partner Burwill Holdings (also Chinese); the company has improved the terms of its $12.5 million repayment request with Tawana from 20 per cent of each lithium concentrate shipment to 15 per cent, an increase to cash flow indicative of long-term faith in the project.

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