Haul trucks at a WA mine site. Image: electra/shutterstock.com

A new non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Chalice Mining and Mitsubishi Corporation will see the pair work together with the intention of forming a potential strategic partnership to develop the Gonneville Project. 

Chalice’s 100 per cent-owned Gonneville PGE-Nickel-Copper-Cobalt Project, is located on Chalice-owned farmland, 70km NE of Perth in Western Australia. 

The MOU sets out a framework for ongoing collaboration and assistance between Chalice and Mitsubishi in relation to development of the Project, with the aim of exploring the possibility of further joint engagement with Chalice – including a potential binding partnership following completion of the Gonneville Pre-Feasibility Study (PFS), which is expected to be completed by mid-CY25. 

The MOU enables the parties to work jointly to further refine the scope of the Project prior to discussing in good faith within 90 days of PFS completion a potential binding partnership, such as a joint arrangement and investment. 

Mitsubishi brings a broad range of capabilities, experience and relationships across equity and debt financing, product marketing, procurement and large-scale project development. 

The MOU is non-exclusive and does not restrict Chalice from entering any other transaction involving the Project. 

Chalice’s Managing Director and CEO, Alex Dorsch, said the company is very pleased to have executed the MOU with Mitsubishi and that it marks the beginning of a foundational, long-term relationship.  

“Mitsubishi’s involvement in the Gonneville Project follows extensive due diligence and discussions over the past 12 months and highlights the longer-term strategic nature and value of the Project as a potential large-scale, long-life and low-carbon source of critical minerals for Western markets.” 

Mr Dorsch said that Mitsubishi was always considered one of the most impressive and best suited strategic partners for the Gonneville Project, based on its decades-long development, operational and trading track record. 

“In the context of key ongoing PFS workstreams and optimisations, the MOU structure is favourable, as it provides a framework for collaboration for both parties during the PFS and allows for the progression and de-risking of the Project prior to having good faith discussions around a potential joint arrangement and investment following the completion of the PFS.  

“We have built a collaborative relationship through the process over the last 12 months, and we have strong strategic, cultural and operational alignment with Mitsubishi. We are excited to work together over the next phase of Project studies towards delivery of the PFS in mid-2025 and targeted Final Investment Decision in late 2026.” 

Mitsubishi Corporation General Manager of the Battery Minerals Office, Kota Ikenishi, said the company is pleased to sign the MOU with Chalice in relation to the Gonneville PGE-NiCu-Co Project.  

“The Project has the potential to become a large-scale, globally significant critical minerals asset, and its US IRA-qualifying suite of metals could have a strategic importance for Japan in the future. 

“We are excited to work together with Chalice and leverage our complementary skillsets to advance the Project as we explore the possibility of formalising a potential long-term partnership.” 

Image: electra/shutterstock.com 

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