POSCO chief enhances partnership in EV battery materials with Australia

2022.06.22 11:17:35 | 2022.06.22 11:29:03

[Photo provided by POSCO Group]이미지 확대

[Photo provided by POSCO Group]

South Korean steelmaking conglomerate POSCO Group sought out to strengthen raw materials partnership with resource-rich Australia to back its secondary battery and other materials business.

POSCO chairman Choi Jeong-woo met with Gina Rinehart, executive chairwoman of Australia’s leading mining and agricultural company Hancock Prospecting, during his visit to Western Australia on Monday and signed a memorandum of understanding to jointly mine key battery metals lithium, nickel, copper and iron ore, as well as to cooperate on the hot briquetted iron business, POSCO said Tuesday.

The two companies have been long-term partners since 2010, carrying out Roy Hill mine development project together and jointly acquiring Senex Energy. With the latest agreement, the companies expect greater synergy from POSCO’s secondary battery value chain and Hancock’s expertise in mining, said Choi.

Before the meeting, Choi held a tete-a-tete with Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan to ask for support for the exchange of technologies and investments, saying Australia will become a key producer and supplier of raw materials for not only steel and secondary batteries but also clean hydrogen for future.

Choi on Tuesday visited Canadian mining and smelting company First Quantum Minerals to discuss cooperation on nickel and other businesses and then Pilbara Minerals to seek for expanded supplies of lithium concentrate and new project opportunities.

POSCO Group has so far invested over 4 trillion won ($3.09 billion) in Australia to develop important metals like iron ore, lithium and nickel.

By Han Woo-ram and Lee Ha-yeon

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