The Lithium Triangle in Argentina continues to deliver increasing lithium production when the world needs it the most. We highlight here the new production coming on stream at the Rincon salar, and profile the new lithium discovery made there by Argentina Lithium.
Argentina Lithium & Energy Corp (PNXLF.OTC; LIT.V) reported a new lithium discovery in July 2022 at its Rincon West project at the Rincon salar in far northwestern Argentina. The company confirmed the discovery with results from an additional three holes in October.
The company’s lithium discovery adjoins Rio Tinto’s (RIO) very large resource, for which RIO paid $825m. LIT has completed the next two drill holes at Rincon West – extending its exploration by two kms into the basin – and both are in for assay. The company is drilling an additional three holes now, and anticipates being able to announce a maiden resource estimate in May, in four months. Results from these five holes are crucial for investors in the company.
There is plenty of room for a large lithium resource in LIT’s Rincon West basin. At 3,700+ hectares, the size is equivalent to 6 x 6 km.
Important aspects to the company’s lithium discovery
There are three exciting aspects to this lithium discovery. First, it is a confirmed discovery in a superb location, in the Lithium Triangle in Argentina adjoining Rio Tinto at the Rincon salar.
RIO is targeting first production of lithium – and lithium carbonate – using direct lithium extraction (DLE) in late 2024. RIO signed a memorandum of understanding with Ford Motor Company in July 2022 to deliver from this salar.
Already, across the salar, Argosy Minerals is producing battery-grade lithium carbonate on a small scale and anticipates producing at the rate of 2,000 tonnes/year starting in the second quarter this year.
Comparable to RIO’s lithium grades
Second, lithium grades thus far from LIT’s drilling are equivalent to the grades in RIO’s lithium resource, with similar values for other minerals as well. It is almost certainly the same brine connected beneath surface. LIT’s lithium values thus far are higher grade than Argosy’s across the salar, and Argosy is producing using evaporation-hybrid processing.
Third, Argentina Lithium itself has not been discovered by the market and still sports a tiny market capitalisation, below US$30m. For comparison, companies with good-sized resource estimates of lithium have market caps well above $100m. The investment opportunity here is palpable.
LIT’s second project, Antofalla North, holds strong potential, with drilling also planned for this year
LIT’s second lithium project in the Lithium Triangle, Antofalla North, adjoins Albemarle’s Antofalla project some 80 km south of Rincon West. Here, Albemarle, the world’s largest lithium producer, has stated publicly that it holds one of the largest lithium resources in Argentina, has been drilling with 4+ rigs, and has not stated the size of their resource publicly.
Here, LIT controls 10,000 hectares, a very large basin. Environmental permitting is in progress. The company anticipates being able to perform detailed geophysics and to initiate drilling in the second or third quarter this year. This project also holds exciting potential for speculative investors.
Argentina Lithium also controls concessions at the Pocitos salar (20% of salar) and the Incahuasi salar (90% of salar). At Pocitos, five companies are exploring there now. Later this year, both of these areas will receive geophysical workups in preparation for drilling to follow.
Argentina Lithium is a Grosso Group company. The Grosso Group has been a pioneer in Argentina exploration since it commenced in 1993, for thirty years. The Group has made networks of allies at all levels: villages, individuals, suppliers, government officials, and provincial authorities. They maintain a strong focus on the environment, the communities and the cultures in the areas where they operate.
The Grosso Group has made four world-class discoveries in Argentina, which is known and appreciated throughout the mining sector there. CEO Nikolaos Cacos and VP-Exploration Miles Rideout are relentless in making sure Rincon West becomes the group’s fifth world-class discovery.
For more information, including key maps, and to receive breaking news from Argentina Lithium, head to: www.argentinalithium.com.