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POSCO to set up lithium hydroxide plant in Argentina

All News 10:32 December 16, 2021

SEOUL, Dec. 16 (Yonhap) -- South Korean steel giant POSCO said Thursday it plans to spend US$830 million on a lithium hydroxide plant in Argentina.

Its board of directors approved a plan to establish the plant near the Salar del Hombre Muerto salt lake in northern Argentina, whose annual production capacity is at 25,000 tonnes of lithium hydroxide.

The capacity is enough to meet demand from 600,000 electric vehicles, according to POSCO.

The plant will be constructed by the first half of 2024.

In May, POSCO, the world's fifth-largest steelmaker by output, also broke ground on a plant in South Korea to extract lithium hydroxide, a key material for electric vehicle batteries.

The plant will have an annual production capacity of 43,000 tons of lithium hydroxide, which is enough to manufacture about 1 million electric vehicles, according to POSCO.

POSCO bought lithium mining rights in Argentina from Australian lithium miner Galaxy Resources for $280 million in 2018.

Currently, the steelmaker has mining rights for an area of 22,800 hectares in the region.

Initially, POSCO estimated that the site had 2.2 million tons of lithium reserves. But the site was later confirmed to contain 13.5 million tons of lithium reserves, which is enough to make batteries for about 370 million electric cars, according to POSCO.

POSCO said it plans to boost its annual production capacity of lithium at home and abroad to 220,000 tons by 2030.

South Korea's steel giant POSCO Group has been pushing to boost its EV business in recent years as part of a diversification strategy.

The flag of POSCO (Yonhap)

The flag of POSCO (Yonhap)


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