MINING INDABA 2018: Rio Tinto assessing Jadar project viability, senior exec says

Rio Tinto is continuing to assess the viability of the Jadar lithium-borate project in Serbia, which already hits a number of key criteria for approval, a senior executive at Rio Tinto told Metal Bulletin.

“For us, Jadar is a great asset and has a by-product credit, which puts it at the lower end of the cost curve. We have to finalize the feasibility and pre-feasibility studies, and get board approval,” Bold Baatar, Rio Tinto’s chief executive officer of energy & minerals, said in an interview at the annual Mining Indaba in Cape Town this week. “It’s the same strategy as in iron ore - unless you’re long life, low cost and expandable, we’re not interested. It doesn’t have to be a large project, though. Lithium is the second most abundant material on the surface of the earth after iron ore. Everywhere you dig up dirt there’s lithium in it. It’s a matter of the cost position,” he added. Rio Tinto discovered the deposit in 2004 near the town of Loznica, around 140km from Belgrade. The deposit contains the mineral jadarite, and is currently the...

Published

Andrea Hotter

February 09, 2018

16:07 GMT

Cape Town