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Mali Enters Agreement with Ganfeng for Operatorship of Goulamina Lithium Mine

Reuters reported that the Mali Government has inked a deal with the Chinese firm Ganfeng Lithium, granting it operational control over the Goulamina lithium mine, according to the country’s economy ministry. This move is in line with Mali’s updated mining regulations aimed at boosting state revenue from mining ventures.

Per the economy ministry’s statement cited by Reuters, Mali’s ownership in the Goulamina project will rise from 20% to 35% under the new terms. The statement emphasizes a “win-win agreement” safeguarding the vital interests of Mali’s populace, as the state embarks on a fresh collaboration with Ganfeng Lithium Co for the Goulamina lithium project’s development and operation.

This accord follows Mali’s adoption of a revised mining code last year, aimed at reinforcing government participation and addressing perceived revenue shortfalls from mining activities. Ganfeng Lithium has committed to establishing a spodumene processing facility, with production slated to begin by year-end, promising a significant boost to Mali’s economy.

Mali’s Economy Minister, Alousseni Sanou, estimated that the deal could generate annual revenues of CFA Fr110bn–115bn ($191.51m) for Mali. Earlier this month, Ganfeng Lithium agreed to purchase a 40% stake in the Goulamina mine from Australia’s Leo Lithium for $342.7m. Leo Lithium cited security risks in Mali and the implications of the new mining code as factors influencing the decision to sell, deemed beneficial for its shareholders.

The Goulamina project encompasses a 100km² land holding in Mali’s Bougouni region, incorporating the Goulamina mineral deposit.

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