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Positive Pioneer Dome Scoping Study Supports Commencement of Detailed Studies


The Scoping Study is based on the Dome North lithium Mineral Resource upgrade in December 2022 with an impressive 81% of the total contained lithium upgraded to the higher confidence Indicated Category, reflecting the thick, high grade and out-cropping nature of the deposits.


HIGHLIGHTS


  • Pioneer Dome Lithium Project Scoping Study demonstrates the potential viability of a standalone mining and processing operation.

  • The Study prepared by Primero, a leading engineering firm with significant lithium project experience, with inputs from other experienced consultants and from the Essential Metals team, resulted in a Base Case NPV10% (real, after tax) of $367 million.

  • The Scoping Study is based on:

- A Mineral Resource estimate of 11.2Mt @ 1.16% Li2O containing 129,000 lithium tonnes; - Metallurgical testwork which demonstrates the potential to produce a saleable lithium concentrate; and

- Mine optimisation modelling which generated economic open pits totalling 8.8Mt of process plant feed at 1.11% Li2O, an average strip ratio of 13.3:1 and a mine life of 7.3 years.


  • The positive results of the Scoping Study support the commencement of detailed studies, cognisant of the proposed acquisition of 100% of Essential by Tianqi Lithium Energy Australia Pty Ltd (TLEA) by way of a Scheme of Arrangement (TLEA Scheme) for $0.50 cash per Essential share as announced on 9 January 2023.

Essential Metals Managing Director, Tim Spencer, said: “The robust Scoping Study results support more detailed studies being undertaken to determine the optimal development pathway to developing a lithium mining operation in Western Australia whilst taking advantage of expected strong demand for lithium concentrate, which should generate healthy margins.”





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