Under the scheme, LG Energy Solution (a spin off of LG Chem) and POSCO Gem 1st Fund have agreed to invest a combined $15 million through a share placement which will give them 7.5 per cent and 3.2 per cent respectively in the Townsville Energy Chemicals Hub.
The two corporates will also take a combined 10,000 tonnes of nickel and 1000 tonnes of cobalt.
QPM said the deal was a major milestone for the project.
“LGES and POSCO are both highly credible and bankable counterparties which will significantly assist QPM’s ability to fund the project,” QPM said.
“Their combined offtake quantities will account for the majority of production at the TECH project, giving QPM the baseload customers it needs to underpin development.”
The QPM project will import nickel laterite ore from New Caledonia and produce nickel-cobalt mixed hydroxide precipitate (or MHP), aluminium hydroxide, high purity haematite and magnesium oxide.
The MHP will then be further refined to produce battery grade chemicals of nickel sulfate and cobalt sulfate. The aluminium hydroxide will be refined to produce high purity alumina.
QPM managing director Stephen Grocott said the decision was a validation of the company and what it was trying to achieve.
LGES Global SCM centre leader Dongsoo Kim said it was the most meaningful investment in the company’s supply chain since it was spun out of LG Chem.
“We believe the TECH project will deliver sustainable nickel and cobalt production that is in line with with LGES’s operating philosophy,” he said.
QPM is currently doing a definitive feasibility study on the TECH project and has started the engagement of key suppliers. It also has a memorandum of understanding for an ore supply from Societe le Nickel.
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