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Coal India to explore lithium blocks in Argentina in collab with US company: Report

Coal India to explore lithium blocks in Argentina in collab with US company: Report

| @indiablooms | 18 Jun 2024, 04:52 pm

New Delhi: State-owned Coal India Ltd is exploring lithium blocks in Argentina in collaboration with a US company to secure supplies of this crucial battery material, reported Reuters.

These efforts are part of India's participation in the US-led Minerals Security Partnership (MSP), which New Delhi joined last year to ensure a stable supply of minerals necessary for achieving zero-carbon objectives.

"Coal India has come forward for the Kachi block in Argentina in which a US company and two other countries are interested to explore under the MSP," a source was quoted as saying by Reuters on conditions of anonymity.

India and the United States announced on Monday that they are co-investing in a lithium resource project in South America and a rare earths deposit in Africa to diversify critical minerals supply chains.

According to Reuters, India has been negotiating with several countries, including the US, to collaborate on lithium processing and reduce reliance on China.

Preliminary studies are currently being conducted, the source mentioned.

In February, during a visit to Argentina, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated that the US was exploring investment opportunities in critical minerals, particularly lithium.

As part of the minerals partnership that India joined last year, New Delhi was invited to participate in 20-25 critical minerals projects.

The Indian government has identified four of these projects, with two being in collaboration with the United States, the source told Reuters.

The second project involves the Kangankunde block in Malawi, which is being explored for rare earths by India's state-owned IREL (India) Ltd, according to the source.

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