Weekly Metals News Digest (Sept 18-24)

Check out a recap of the most important mining news from the past week:

China Increases Winged Metal Production

Primary aluminum production in China demonstrated strong growth in August, increasing by 3.1% compared to the same month in 2022, reaching 3.6 million metric tons. In comparison to July 2023, it surged by 3.4%. This significant rise in winged metal production in China is largely attributed to improved hydroelectric power plant utilization in the southwestern province of Yunnan, following a severe drought, and increased electricity supply to local aluminum plants.

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Adriatic Metals Aims to Revive Silver Mining in the Balkans

British company Adriatic Metals plans to rejuvenate the dormant Vares silver mine located in Bosnia, which has been idle since the early 1990s due to the devastating Balkan civil war. As part of this project, Adriatic Metals will invest $40 million in exploration and resource reassessment at Bapec and an additional $30 million in infrastructure restoration work.

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Maaden Ventures into Lithium

Saudi mining company Maaden has expressed interest in lithium extraction. To achieve this, Maaden has signed a collaboration agreement with King Abdullah University of Science and Technology. Under this agreement, they will jointly invest in the startup Lihytech, which is developing technology for extracting lithium from seawater.

It is estimated that the world’s oceans contain 230 billion metric tons of lithium, compared to the 21 million metric tons found on land. Extracting just 1% of this lithium could significantly meet global demand.

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USA Seeks to Secure its Nickel Supply

The U.S. Department of Defense will allocate $20.6 million to support the Tamarack project in Minnesota. Talon Metals, an American company, operates this project, and as part of the agreement with the U.S. Department of Defense, it will provide an additional $21.8 million. These funds will be used for geophysical and drilling work to accelerate the discovery of prospective deposits of non-ferrous metal ores within Tamarack, located in the so-called Midcontinent Rift System, which runs through North America.

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Uzbekistan Aims for Aluminum Production

Uzbek company Uzbekkumir may hire South Korean Sebine Technology to implement a project for alumina and primary aluminum production. The raw material is expected to be kaolin clays, similar in aluminum content to bauxites, which are co-mined with brown coal at the Angren deposit, the largest coal deposit in Central Asia.

Earlier in 2008, Uzbekkumir signed a contract with the All-Russian Institute of Aluminum and Magnesium for the development of a project to build an aluminum plant with a capacity of 0.5 million metric tons per year, which was not implemented.

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