Lithium plant works on track
With up to 500 construction workers on site, stage oneof Tianqi’s Kwinana refinery is about 75 per cent complete, with stage two in progress.
Upon completion, the refinery will be the biggest lithium hydroxide plant in the world, and Tianqi Lithium Australia general manager Phil Thick said there was more lithium in WA than anywhere else in the world.
“Just about every manufacturer in the world has come out with pretty strong and aggressive targets for production of electric vehicles over the next five or 10 years and that’s what’s driving the demand for lithium,” he said.
Global consumption of lithium hydroxide last year was about 40,000 tonnes but Mr Thick said Tianqi would aim to produce about 48,000 tonnes a year at Kwinana. Demand for the mineral is tipped to grow by 18 per cent a year until 2026.
“(Kwinana is) one of the best industrial strips anywhere in the world because of the inter-relationship of all the businesses,” Mr Thick said.