As part of the larger deal, Yahua has also acquired 13.2 per cent of the Vancouver-based Ultra Lithium company.
“We want to closely work with the local communities to develop the Georgia Lake / Forgan Lake properties with financial backing of a large lithium producer in the world. Now that Yahua’s acquisition of a 60% interest in the Northern Ontario Properties has been completed Yahua will invest $3 million into the JV Co. for exploration expenditures. The Company looks forward to embarking on its spring/summer 2022 exploration program,” Ultra Lithium CEO Weiguo Lang stated.
According to the Epoch Times, the joint venture will build a lithium concentrate mining and processing plant capable of producing 200,000 tons of lithium oxide per year for at least 10 years.
This isn’t the only stake in a Canadian lithium producer that a Chinese-state-owned company has bought, though. Earlier this year, Zijin Mining Group Co. acquired the Toronto-based Neo Lithium Corporation.
“It’s concerning that the foreign takeover of Canadian lithium mining company Neo Lithium was not immediately subject to a national security review by the Liberal government,” said Conservative MP Michelle Rempel Garner in a statement.
“Canada is falling behind in developing its critical mineral industries, and allowing the foreign takeover of companies like Neo Lithium without due diligence could further weaken our strategic interest in developing a domestic supply of lithium and other critical minerals.”
Lithium is big business, too, with the metal being crucial in creating batteries for the rapidly expanding electric vehicle industry. In 2021, the Yahua Group’s total revenue grew by 61.26 per cent, reaching just shy of $800 million USD.This growth comes after Tesla signed a contract with the company worth between 532 to 743 million USD to supply them with battery-grade lithium hydroxide until 2026.