EQS-News: EcoGraf Limited: September Quarterly Activities Report
30 October 2023
September Quarterly Activities Report
Vertically integrated battery anode materials developer EcoGraf Ltd. ("EcoGraf" or "the Company") (ASX: EGR) is pleased to release its activities and cash flow reports for the three months ended 30 September 2023.
EXTRACT EcoGraf Natural Graphite Projects
- Project funding program in progress in conjunction with the Company's financial advisers to secure debt financing for construction of the new 73ktpa Epanko graphite mine
- Completed negotiations on the Engineering Procurement Construction and Management (EPCM) contract term sheet with contract ready to be awarded for the Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) phase
- TANESCO conducted the field work for the financial study for the 33kV power line for Epanko
- Epanko Special Mining Licence application lodged with the Tanzanian Mining Commission progressing to grant. New mining tenure covering a larger area and 87% increase in the strike length of graphite strike over existing Mining Licence
- Updated Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) in preparation for mine development progressed well
- Valuation of Project Affected People (PAP) assets and land continued during the period with 97% of the work completed
- Resettlement Working Group (RWG) meetings continue with selection of resettlement site nearing completion
- Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) updated and submitted to Mining Commission as per new Mining (CSR) Regulations, 2023
- A total of 1,412m Reverse Circulation holes and 1,004m Diamond holes were drilled which focussed on the extension of the Mineral Resource estimate for the planned mine expansion study
- Bulk sample excavated to provide larger volume of product samples for downstream customers and confirmed the 'free dig' nature of the oxide mineralisation
UPGRADE EcoGraf™ Battery Anode Material
- US White House briefing room statement by US President as a result of Australia's Prime Minister official visit included EcoGraf in the Fact Sheet titled 'Delivering on the Next Generation of Innovation and Partnership with Australia'
- Mechanical shaping study was completed, showing significant operational benefits of establishing the Milling and Shaping facility in Tanzania, with up to 50% lower costs and ~20% reduction in carbon emissions using cost competitive hydro-energy
- Decision to locate the Product Qualification Facility (PQF) in Western Australia was finalised
- Facility jointly funded through an award of A$2.9m under the Commonwealth Government's A$48.9m Critical Minerals Development Program, which is supporting Australian battery minerals processing capability
- Testwork will complement the Company's product testing activities and support offtake discussions with prospective anode, battery and electric vehicle customers in Europe, North America and Asia
- Successful completion of the program is a key step towards the Company's development of commercial scale purified spherical graphite (active anode material) operations
- Agreement signed with Vietnam based VinES Energy Solutions Joint Stock Company to evaluate development of a battery anode material (BAM) facility in Vietnam using EcoGraf HFFree™ US patented processing technology. VinES, together with VinFast - a global electric vehicle manufacturer, are both members of VinGroup, the largest private conglomerate in Vietnam.
- EcoGraf received notice on July 18, 2023 from the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) that its patent application, filed on 1 November 2022, entitled "Method of Producing Purified Graphite" has been granted as U.S. Patent 11,702342.
- An oral hearing of the opposition to the Company's Australian Patent was held on 23 October. The decision on the Opposition has been reserved by a Delegate of the Commissioner of Patents and will likely be issued by February 2024.
- Discussions are continuing with battery market participants on the establishment of commercial scale EcoGraf HFfree™ purification facilities in key global battery regions Europe, Asia and North America.
RECYCLE EcoGraf™ Anode Material Recycling
- Continued discussions with battery manufacturers and electric vehicle OEMs to support their sustainability programs in EU and US
- Positive technical meetings held with partners and potential customers in Europe providing the latest positive results achieved from recent anode scrap demonstrating the potential to recycle in the battery supply chain
- Increased interest from EV manufacturers to pursue closed loop manufacturing for battery minerals, including anode recycling.
- China announced new legislation to safeguard national security by imposing graphite export restrictions on synthetic and natural flake graphite and its products (including battery anode graphite)
- Product marketing and customer meeting engagement in Europe completed
- Discussions continuing with potential partners interested in Innogy mineral assets (Nickel, Lithium and Gold).
- Cash and deposits as at $34.7m
EcoGraf is building a vertically integrated battery anode materials business to produce high purity graphite products for the lithium-ion battery and advanced manufacturing markets. Over US$30 million has been invested to date to create a highly attractive graphite mining and mineral processing business.
In Tanzania, the Company is developing the TanzGraphite natural flake graphite business, commencing with the Epanko Graphite Project, to provide a long-term, scalable supply of feedstock for EcoGraf™ battery anode material processing facilities, together with high quality large flake graphite products for specialised industrial applications.
Using its environmentally superior EcoGraf HFfree™purification technology, the Company will upgrade the flake graphite to produce 99.95%C high performance battery anode material to supply electric vehicle, battery and anode manufacturers in Asia, Europe and North America as the world transitions to clean, renewable energy.
Battery recycling is critical to improving supply chain sustainability and the Company's successful application of the EcoGraf™ purification process to recycle battery anode material provides it with a unique ability to support customers to reduce CO2 emissions and lower battery costs.
Released corporate video: www.youtube/xSY4RiXmNW4
2023 Australia-Korea Critical Minerals and New Energy Forum on 30 October 2023 in Sydney, New South Wales.
International Mining and Resources Conference and Expo on 31 October - 2 November 2023 in Sydney, New South Wales.
AABC US on 11-14 December 2023 in San Diego, California.