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Lithium Ionic Secures Grid Power Connection Contract with Cemig for Sustainable Electrification of the Bandeira Lithium Project, Minas Gerais, Brazil

View PDF version of this release: ENGLISH

TORONTO, ON, October 31, 2023 – Lithium Ionic Corp. (TSXV: LTH; OTCQX: LTHCF; FSE: H3N) (“Lithium Ionic” or the “Company”) reports that its 100%-owned Brazilian subsidiary, MGLIT Empreendimentos Ltda (“MGLIT”), has entered into an agreement (the “Cemig Agreement”) with Cemig Distribuição S.A. (“Cemig”) to facilitate the construction and electrification of essential power infrastructure between Cemig's existing power grid and the future Bandeira lithium operation (“Bandeira”), located approximately 3 kilometers away (see Figure 1). The agreement aligns with the Company’s goal of fast-tracking Bandeira towards production and solidifies its position as a near-term lithium producer in the region by securing low-cost, renewable hydroelectric power to meet the long-term requirements of the project. Cemig is the largest electricity distributor in Brazil, serving, through its network extensions, approximately 96% of the State of Minas Gerais.

Lithium Ionic has commissioned an independent NI 43-101 compliant Feasibility Study (“FS”) for Bandeira, which is expected to be completed in early 2024. The FS follows the completion of a Preliminary Economic Assessment (“PEA”) earlier this month, which supported a long-life and low-cost spodumene concentrate mining project with a post-tax Net Present Value (“NPV”)8% of US$1.6 billion (~C$2.2 billion) and an Internal Rate of Return (“IRR”) of 121% (see press release dated October 19, 2023).

Commenting on this development, Blake Hylands, P.Geo, CEO of Lithium Ionic, stated, “Securing a connection to the region’s sustainable hydroelectric power infrastructure marks a significant de-risking milestone on our path to becoming Brazil's next prominent lithium producer and reaffirms our commitment to delivering value to our shareholders by rapidly advancing this project. With a reliable source of sustainable and renewable electricity, the Bandeira project is poised to benefit from cost-efficient power and a reduced carbon footprint, aligning with our corporate and ESG objectives. We look forward to collaborating with Cemig on this important project.”

Details related to the Cemig Agreement include:

  • The electrical transmission infrastructure will include 3 kilometres of new transmission lines, as well as a new substation adjacent to the future Bandeira mine.  
  • MGLIT will directly undertake the construction of the electric connection systems, including negotiations with contractors and suppliers, as well as the purchase of materials and services, in accordance with Cemig's pre-approved list.
  • MGLIT and Cemig will jointly manage environmental licensing and land management.
  • The total project cost is expected to be approximately BRL$17million (approx. CAD$4.65 million). Following the completion of the project, the Company is eligible for reimbursement of up to BRL$2.98 million (approx. CAD$816,000), subject to certain requirements.
  • The construction of the new electrical infrastructure is scheduled to be completed by Q4 2025, with electrification scheduled for the same period (subject to specific requirements).
  • Following the construction and a technical inspection by Cemig, the transmission lines and substation will be transferred to Cemig. The operation and maintenance of electrical infrastructure downstream of the new substation will be MGLIT’s responsibility.

Figure 1.  Bandeira Project Location, Existing Substation and Transmission Lines, and New Electrical Infrastructure Layout Connecting Bandeira to Existing Power Grid

About Lithium Ionic Corp.

Lithium Ionic is a Canadian mining company exploring and developing its lithium properties in Brazil. Its flagship Itinga and Salinas projects cover 14,182 hectares in the northeastern part of Minas Gerais state, a mining-friendly jurisdiction that is quickly emerging as a world-class hard-rock lithium district. The Itinga Project is situated in the same region as CBL’s Cachoeira lithium mine, which has produced lithium for +30 years, as well as Sigma Lithium Corp.’s Grota do Cirilo project, which hosts the largest hard-rock lithium deposit in the Americas.

Qualified Persons

The technical information in this news release has been prepared by Carlos Costa, Vice President Exploration of Lithium Ionic and Blake Hylands, CEO and director of Lithium Ionic, and both are “qualified persons” as defined in NI 43-101.

Investor and Media Inquiries:

+1 647.316.2500
[email protected]

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains statements that constitute “forward-statements.” Such forward looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the Company’s actual results, performance or achievements, or developments to differ materially from the anticipated results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Although the Company believes, in light of the experience of its officers and directors, current conditions and expected future developments and other factors that have been considered appropriate that the expectations reflected in this forward-looking information are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on them because the Company can give no assurance that they will prove to be correct. When used in this press release, the words “estimate”, “project”, “belief”, “anticipate”, “intend”, “expect”, “plan”, “predict”, “may” or “should” and the negative of these words or such variations thereon or comparable terminology are intended to identify forward-looking statements and information. The forward-looking statements and information in this press release include information relating to  the economic viability of Bandeira, the development of Bandeira, the ability to complete the FS and timing thereof, the Company’s exploration program and other mining projects and prospects thereof, the Company’s ability to complete a feasibility study, the Company’s ability to complete an environmental impact assessment and obtain the requisite permitting and approvals and the Company’s future plans. Such statements and information reflect the current view of the Company. Risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated in those forward-looking statements and information. By their nature, forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements, or other future events, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. The forward-looking information contained in this news release represents the expectations of the Company as of the date of this news release and, accordingly, is subject to change after such date. Readers should not place undue importance on forward-looking information and should not rely upon this information as of any other date. The Company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements in the event that management’s beliefs, estimates or opinions, or other factors, should change.

Neither the TSXV nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSXV) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this press release.

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