NEW YORK, September 27, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
A research by Markets and Markets estimates that the lithium ion battery market is expected to be valued USD 68.97 Billion by 2022, or growing at a CAGR of 16.6% between 2016 and 2022. The growth of this market is highly impacted by the increase in demand for electric vehicles, strict government mandates on fuel economy, growing demand for smart devices, and other consumer electronics. The lithium cobalt oxide (LCO) battery type is expected to hold the largest share of the overall lithium ion battery market in 2016 and the market for lithium nickel manganese cobalt battery type is expected to grow at the highest rate between 2016 and 2022. Cruz Cobalt Corp (OTC: BKTPF), Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ: TLSA), Katanga Mining Limited (OTC: KATFF), Glencore Plc (OTC: GLNCY), Lithium Americas Corp. (OTC: LACDF)
A report by Rockstone-Research also indicates the importance of cobalt in the market. "The growth of the li-ion battery industry, which has already contributed to booms in both the graphite and lithium space, is likely to result in growing demand for cobalt, given it's a key material input in most li-ion battery cells. Cobalt prices have already started rising, but are still a long way from their pre-financial crisis highs. Second, there is a serious geopolitical situation brewing in the DRC, the country responsible for over 60% of annual global primary cobalt production. If those developments turn sour and the current president, Joseph Kabila once again fails to step down at the end of 2017, then there is the real possibility of an outbreak of unrest in the country. That could lead to significant disruption to cobalt output from the country, the likely result of which would be a serious global cobalt supply squeeze," according to Rockstone-Research.
Cruz Cobalt Corp (OTC: BKTPF) is also listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the ticker symbol 'CUZ'. Earlier today the company just announced breaking news that crews were recently mobilized on the 100 percent owned Chicken Hawk Cobalt Prospect located in Deer Lodge County, Montana. This prospect consists of 64 contiguous lode claims covering approximately 1,300 acres. The company wishes to report that an additional 30 claims have been acquired by Cruz strategically located contiguous to the existing Chicken Hawk Cobalt Prospect. The Chicken Hawk Cobalt prospect will now consist of approximately 1,940 contiguous acres.
The Chicken Hawk Cobalt Prospect is located on the western edge of the Boulder Batholith and east of the Cordilleran Fold and Thrust Belt in south-western Montana. Covering a boundary between a Cretaceous granodiorite and the Eocene age Lowland Creek Volcanic rocks. The claims are in the vicinity of 4 volcanic rock suites. Cobalt, the primary targeted commodity of the Chicken Hawk, occurs in pyritized andesite and as cobaltian arsenopyrite. The claims surround 4 patented claims, no less than 15 prospects and 3 adits.
Cruz President, James Nelson, stated, "We are pleased to increase the acreage on the Chicken Hawk Prospect. Work is ongoing and these new claims are strategically located on the property. The data we have analyzed indicates to us that the cobalt trend snakes its way through Idaho into Montana and up into Southern British Columbia. Cruz has property in each of Idaho, Montana and British Columbia as well as being one of the single largest landholders around the town of Cobalt, Ontario. Cruz is active on multiple projects in two countries and has enough cash on hand to undertake all its planned work programs, all of this at a time when the global focus on cobalt and all factors regarding the Electric Car sector is gaining momentum. Earlier this month, the price of cobalt traded to $28.35, a new 9-year high as many countries, including China, are making comments about going only electric and banning all gas vehicles."
Cruz currently has nine cobalt projects located throughout North America, comprising of four in Ontario, three in British Columbia, one in Idaho and one in Montana. Cruz's four separate Ontario cobalt prospects are all located in the vicinity of the town of Cobalt making Cruz one of the largest landholders in this emerging cobalt district. Cruz's Ontario projects include the 1,265 acre Coleman cobalt prospect, the 900 acre Johnson cobalt prospect, the 4,980 acre Hector cobalt prospect and the 1,580 acre Bucke cobalt prospect. The company's 4,935 acre War Eagle cobalt prospect in British Columbia covers a past-producing mine. Cruz's USA projects include the 1,940 acre Chicken Hawk prospect in Montana and the 880 acre Idaho Star prospect. The technical contents of this release were approved by Toby Hughes, P.Geo, a qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101."
Tesla, Inc. (NASDAQ: TLSA) announced that they will collaborate to develop next-generation battery cells for electric vehicles. Tesla will use Panasonic's battery cells in their newest battery packs. The cells are comprised of Nickel-based Lithium ion chemistry, the highest energy density battery cells in production today, preferred by Tesla for EV applications because of their high capacity, light weight, durability, and long life. "Combining Tesla's rigorous cell testing and understanding of EV requirements with Panasonic's cutting-edge battery technology will result in custom cells optimized for use in EVs," said JB Straubel, Tesla's Chief Technology Officer.
Katanga Mining Limited (OTC: KATFF) operates a large-scale copper-cobalt project with substantial high-grade mineral reserves and integrated metallurgical operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Katanga holds a 75% stake in two joint ventures with Gécamines, a state-owned mining company in the DRC. The company's single-site operation, which comprises brownfield assets and new facilities under construction, will have one of the lowest unit production costs in the world, net of by-product credits. All assets and operations of Katanga Mining Limited are located in the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo. It is a vast country with immense economic resources, including an estimated 10% of the world's copper and 50% of its cobalt.
Glencore Plc (OTC: GLNCY) is one of the world's largest global diversified natural resource companies and a major producer and marketer of more than 90 commodities. The Group's operations comprise around 150 mining and metallurgical sites, oil production assets and agricultural facilities. Earlier this year, the company announced it purchased from subsidiaries of Fleurette Properties Limited the Fleurette group's remaining 31% stake in Mutanda Mining Sarl and an approximate 10.25% stake in Katanga Mining Limited. As of December 2016, Mutanda production was at an annualized production rate of above 200 ktpa. of copper cathodes and 24 ktpa of cobalt in hydroxide. Katanga operates a major mine complex in the Democratic Republic of Congo producing refined copper and cobalt.
Lithium Americas Corp. (OTCQX: LACDF), together with SQM, is developing the Cauchari-Olaroz lithium project, located in Jujuy, Argentina, through its 50% interest in Minera Exar. In addition, Lithium Americas owns 100% of the Lithium Nevada project, and RheoMinerals Inc., a supplier of rheology modifiers for oil-based drilling fluids, coatings, and specialty chemicals. On July 5, 2017, the company provided an update e on the Cauchari-Olaroz lithium project in the Province of Jujuy, Argentina. On Thursday, June 29, 2017, senior executives from Minera Exar, Lithium Americas and SQM attended a meeting in Buenos Aires with government officials from Argentina, including the President of Argentina, Mauricio Macri, and the Governor of the Province of Jujuy, Gerardo Morales. All parties reaffirmed their commitment to support the development of Cauchari-Olaroz.
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