Release date- 06092017 - NOVO LITIO LTD ('Novo Litio', 'NLI' or 'the Company') (ASX: NLI, FRANKFURT: ORM), is pleased to inform shareholders that it has acquired a very large (354km2 ) granted tenement package, over an area of known LCT-type pegmatite occurrences around the Sepeda Lithium Project, from TSX-v listed Medgold Resources Corp. ('Medgold'),.
This transaction is a major strategic achievement for NLI within the northern pegmatite belt in Portugal. This tenement package is one of the few holdings along the belt that is not subject to overlapping exploration tenement applications, of which many have been in application status for over 12 months.
The acquisition provides the Company with a rich exploration pipeline for petalite/spodumene lithium deposit targets in the immediate vicinity of its core Sepeda project. Portuguese Mining and Energy Ministry (DGEG) records and initial fieldwork by NLI indicate multiple occurrences of Sn/W-bearing pegmatites within the new tenement package. These are analogous to the Sepeda Lithium Project, which is recorded, by DGEG, as a single Sn/W-bearing pegmatite occurrence within the same rock sequence. NLI believes that such historically recorded Sn/W pegmatite occurrences, as proven by the Sepeda discovery, are strong targets for lithium.
As previously disclosed, Novo Litio has a binding agreement to acquire 100% of the granted licence and licence applications held by Lusorecursos ARG and Lusorecursos LDA. Completion of the transfer of licences to Novo Litio remains pending and has been frustrated by the vendors. Novo Litio has sought unsuccessfully to resolve the issue on a commercial basis. The Company considers it has binding and enforceable legal rights and is now pursuing the matter on an expedited basis in the Courts of Portugal.
Novo Litio CEO David Frances commented: 'We are very pleased to bolster our core Sepeda Lithium Project with a much-increased granted exploration licence footprint in the area, and a promising pipeline of exploration targets analogous to Sepeda. We are now the largest granted tenement landholders in the northern Portugal lithium belt, which provides us with tremendous upside for our lithium resource discovery at Sepeda.'
Acquisition & Tenement Details
Lusidakota, a wholly-owned subsidiary of NLI, will purchase 100% of Medgold's wholly owned Portuguese subsidiary. In consideration for the acquisition of 100% of Medgold's subsidiary, Lusidakota will pay Medgold: 167,500 EUR (One hundred and sixty-seven thousand, five hundred Euros), equivalent to the bonds paid to the DGEG for the Boticas and Chaves exploration licences, upon completion of the Proposed Transaction. In the event that a discovery is not made and these tenements are relinquished, NLI understands that these bonds will be recoverable from the DGEG.
Initial Observations & Work Plans
The Chaves-Limarinho area contains a series of tin-bearing, LCT-type pegmatites, thought to be similar to Sepeda. These pegmatites outcrop in Silurian pelitic-greywacke metasediments between syn to late-tectonic granites. The pegmatites tend to outcrop in swarms along a WNW-ESE strike, defining a corridor of pegmatite occurrences. In the past, according to DGEG records, most of these occurrences were mined for tin (cassiterite).
NLI has conducted initial field reconnaissance works on the Boticas and Chaves licences, and identified multiple historic open-pit and underground tin workings in pegmatites, in a similar setting and host rock to the Sepeda lithium discovery. One particularly significant area of old tin-mining activity was noted approximately 25 km from NLI's Sepeda prospect. This consisted of a series of workings outcropping over 3km of strike, in families of NW-SE swarms of pegmatites. The largest single open pit is 120m long and 20m wide and 20m deep, with similar orientation and structure to the Romano Lithium deposit. In a similar manner to the exploration that led to the Sepeda lithium discovery, NLI plans to conduct systematic mapping and sampling of these pegmatites to produce Reverse Circulation (RC) drill targets for the near term.
About Novo Litio
Novo Litio's aim is to become a sustainable supplier of ultra-low impurity lithium concentrate and lithium carbonate/hydroxide, to the high-tech glass and ceramics industry and the European battery markets, via its European projects in Portugal and Sweden.
Portugal, as the leading lithium producer in Europe1, was identified by the Company to be a high priority jurisdiction for lithium exploration. NLI's lithium projects in Northern Portugal are located over three broad districts of pegmatitic dyke swarms, which contain spodumene- and petalite-bearing pegmatites. The three main districts are the Serra de Arga, Barroso-Alvao and Barca de Alva pegmatite fields, all three of which are highly prospective for lithium mineralisation. The NLI tenement package consists of thirteen exploration licences (one granted and twelve under application). After encouraging initial results, work at the Sepeda lithium project near the Barroso-Alvao district has accelerated, with a maiden JORC Mineral Resource announced in Feb 2017, initial metallurgical testwork now completed, and a scoping study nearing completion.
NLI's Spodumenberget prospect is located in central Sweden, in the locality of Ornskoldsvik, in Vasternorrland County. Historical reconnaissance work from the 1980s by the LKAB indicated surface lithium results2 of up to 0.788% Li, equivalent to 1.69% Li2O, related to spodumene-bearing pegmatite mineralisation over a large area3. Cassiterite and columbite were also noted. These observations have now been confirmed by the work carried out by GeoVista AB. In addition, the Company has gained a large portfolio of tenements in the Hamrange region of Gavle Municipality in Gavleborg County, and in the Raggen region of the Bracke Municipality, Jamtland County, in Central Northern Sweden. Both areas contain mapped LCT-type pegmatites prospective for lithium mineralisation, and will be assessed in the coming months.
Lithium in Europe
Many countries in Europe are leading the world in uptake of electric vehicles (EVs) using lithium-ion batteries, with EVs already totalling 24% of all new vehicle sales in Norway in 2016.
Lithium-ion batteries are already being assembled in Europe to meet this increasing demand, and production capacity in car-producing countries such as Germany is growing dramatically to keep up.
Nine lithium-ion 'megafactories' across Europe are either already producing, under construction or planned for development, including Nissan4 , Samsung5 , BMZ6 , Daimler-Mercedes7 , Tesla8 , Audi9 and LG Chem10.
For sustainable long-term supply, battery producers and consumers would support access to a total supply chain located in Europe. Furthermore, sourcing lithium from Europe would also significantly reduce the carbon footprint of the car production supply chain.
The Company is of the view that as the Company's projects are closer to potential downstream processing locations than lithium deposits in Australia and Canada, which tend to be in remote locations, they offer the following economic advantages:
The established storage and transportation infrastructure associated with the distribution of minerals in Europe will reduce the investment required by NLI for these capabilities. The net result is that deliveries of concentrates will probably be made on a daily basis.
The proximity of potential downstream processing facilities will reduce the storage facility requirements at the mine/concentrator site.
The proximity of the Novo Litio lithium projects to established communities familiar with the mining and processing of lithium minerals will eliminate the need for fly-in fly-out arrangements.
The combination of the above factors is likely to reduce the minimum size of an economic independent supply lithium battery supply chain in Europe; reducing the capital requirements of the supply chain.
David J Frances
Novo Litio Limited
Tel: +61 (8) 228 4408