Electric vehicles have been in the spotlight lately, which creates an opportunity as well as a problem for the producers of the metal that the batteries of electric vehicles are made off – lithium. A mineral for which, as long as the demand for electric vehicles continues to increase and an economically viable alternative is not found, the demand is also going to increase respectively. The prices of lithium carbonate have more than doubled in the last two years.
Currently, 67% of global lithium reserves are located in Chile and Argentina, even though Australia is the biggest lithium producer.
Reportedly, Orocobre Ltd. – an Australian mineral resource company, has run into problems when attempting to pump the brine solution, which eventually evaporates and leaves behind lithium. The problems were mainly bad weather conditions and pump glitches, which proves that entering the lithium production business is rather difficult.
Occurrences like that of Orocobre as well as create uncertainty on the supply side, making the process of raising funds for new initiatives more challenging, ultimately driving up the prices of lithium.