05/03/2021 - 12:00

EcoGraf gets major project status

05/03/2021 - 12:00

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The federal government has granted major project status to EcoGraf's proposed $98 million battery graphite facility in Kwinana, one day after unveiling a long-term plan to boost Australia's critical minerals sector.

EcoGraf gets major project status
A proposed battery graphite processing facility in Kwinana has received Major Project Status from the government. Photo: EcoGraf

The federal government has granted major project status to EcoGraf's proposed $98 million battery graphite facility in Kwinana, one day after unveiling a long-term plan to boost Australia's critical minerals sector.

West Perth-based EcoGraf is planning to produce high-purity battery graphite from the 5,000 tonnes per annum processing plant, which is expected to increase to 20,000tpa upon completion. 

The facility will be the first of its kind outside of China, with the graphite produced suitable for use in lithium-ion batteries (used in electric vehicles). It forms part of an agreement between EcoGraf and DevelopmentWA, announced in September last year.

EcoGraf recently raised $55 million to finalise the construction works associated with phase one of the plant, which is being designed by ASX-listed GR Engineering Services.

In approving major project status, Industry, Science and Technology Minister Karen Andrews said the facility would contribute to the growth of Australia’s critical minerals industry.

It comes one day after the federal government released details of a 10-year roadmap aimed at boosting the country’s resources technology and critical minerals sectors.

“Unprecedented investment is currently under way to establish self-sufficient and sustainable battery manufacturing supply chains to support the electric vehicle industry,” EcoGraf managing director Andrew Spinks said.

He said EcoGraf’s development also aligned with recent legislative policy changes in Europe that required higher standards of environmental and social governance (ESG) in battery supply chains.

EcoGraf is considering a second battery graphite processing facility, in Europe, following completion of stage one of its Kwinana plant. The proposed European facility will use the same engineering design to produce 20,000tpa, EcoGraf says.

The company was trading 2.5 per cent higher at 1:54pm AEDT to 62 cents. Its share price reached a record $1.10 in mid-February.

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