Canadian miners eye more lithium deals after LG Energy signs three deals in 24 hours
South Korean battery maker LG Energy Solution Ltd. announced three agreements in a span of 24 hours with Canadian miners to source materials required to make batteries for electric vehicles (EVs) as it looks to boost its focus on North America.
After announcing its three-year cobalt deal with Toronto-based Electra Battery Materials Corp. on Thursday morning, the Tesla Inc. supplier announced agreements to source lithium from Toronto-based miner Avalon Advanced Materials Inc. and Winnipeg-based Snow Lake Resources Avalon Advanced Materials Ltd., which is developing a lithium project in Manitoba.
“Basically, the door is now open for us to start working with some of the EV manufacturers that want to be able to get sure access to the battery material products,” said Avalon’s chief executive, Donald Bubar, adding that the deal with LG Energy was a “very significant” first step towards finalizing a sales agreement with a “major processor.”
Snow Lake chief executive Philip Gross echoed a similar sentiment and said that although a domestic supply chain doesn’t yet “exist,” the law will pressure companies to make changes.
“We are seeing announcements every day with foreign manufacturers on shoring their production in order to comply and benefit from the act,” he said.
The deals paint a hopeful picture at a time when the demand for EVs has increased and the world looks to shift away from coal, but Canada still lacks a steady mine that produces lithium, a key component of the batteries used in EVs.