Savannah’s Mina do Barroso in Portugal is now estimated to hold 14 million tonnes at 11 percent lithium oxide, up 52 percent from a previous report.
Diversified miner Savannah Resources (LSE:SAV) saw its shares jump on Wednesday (May 2) after announcing a more than 50 percent increase in the size of its Portuguese lithium project resource estimate.
According to an updated mineral resource, Savannah’s Mina do Barroso in northern Portugal is now estimated to hold 14 million tonnes at 11 percent lithium oxide – 52 percent higher than previously reported.
Demand for lithium, a key element in electric car batteries, is expected to surge in the coming years. Savannah could become the first western European project to come on stream, the company said in a press release.
“We believe that Mina do Barroso has the potential to be a key piece of Europe’s emerging lithium value chain, [supporting] the shift by European car manufacturers to the production of electric vehicles,” CEO David Archer said.
“Spodumene concentrate (from hard rock lithium) is the dominant lithium product that is traded internationally, and with no current European producer we believe that Portugal could be the first European supplier.”
The resource estimate was defined from three deposits and the expansion marks an 87 percent increase in the total mineral resource estimate at Grandao to 10.3 million tonnes at 1.1 percent lithium oxide, containing 111,600 tonnes of lithium oxide.
Looking ahead, the company is set to make a decision about development by early next year, but will publish the results of a scoping study this quarter.
Aside from the Mina do Barroso in Portugal, Savannah is developing two lithium projects in Finland and copper assets in Oman.
The company has also partnered with mining giant Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO, NYSE:RIO, LSE:RIO) to develop the Mutamba Mineral Sands project in Mozambique.
On Wednesday, shares of Savannah Resources closed up 12.5 percent in London at GBX 6.30.
Don’t forget to follow us at @INN_Resource for real-time news updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Priscila Barrera, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.