Chinese Investors to Build $350 Million Lithium Project in Sulawesi

Two Chinese investors, Chengxin Lithium Group Co Ltd and affiliate Tsingshan Holding Group will invest in a lithium project in the country worth $350 million. The lithium plant will be used to meet demand from the battery sector for electric vehicles.

Tsingshan turned to the lithium industry at a time when prices for the commodity soared amid rising sales of electric vehicles in China’s top market.

Chengxin said the partners will build a factory to make lithium chemicals at the Morowali Industrial Park in Sulawesi. The location is where several Chinese investment projects are located.

Chengxin said the plant will produce 50,000 tons per year of lithium hydroxide and 10,000 tons per year of lithium carbonate.

Chengxin said it would own 65 per cent of the joint venture – called PT ChengTok Lithium Indonesia – and Singapore-founded Stellar Investment Pte would hold a 35 per cent stake.

A Chengxin investor relations official said Friday that Stellar is an affiliate of Tsingshan.

Tsingshan did not respond to a request for comment.

Last week, South Korea’s LG Energy Solution and Hyundai Motor Group began construction of a factory to manufacture electric vehicle batteries in West Java worth $1.1 billion. [ah]

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