Allkem announced the extension of the International Financing Corporation (IFC) project financing by an additional $50m with IDB Invest for its Sal de Vida (SDV) project in Argentina.

IDB Invest, a member of the Inter-American Development Bank, is a multilateral development bank that promotes economic development in Latin America and the Caribbean.

In July this year, the Argentinian mining company secured up to $180m in loans from IFC, a member of the World Bank, including up to $130m in financing over ten years.

The financing will be used to support the development of the first stage development of the battery-grade brine lithium plant at the Sal de Vida site in Argentina.

IDB Invest has agreed to provide additional long-term financing of $50m on terms materially consistent with the IFC and with global environmental and social standards.

The increased project financing of $180m remains structured as sustainability-linked loans.

Allkem managing director and CEO Martin Perez de Solay said: “We are pleased to increase the size of the sustainability-linked green loans for Sal de Vida which combine ambitious environmental and social targets.

“These targets and commitments support the responsible and sustainable development of lithium for a greener future and regional economic growth in the province of Catamarca.

“We are proud to partner with IFC and IDB Invest to ensure long-term safe and sustainable operations, including local employment, the development of local supply chains, and community development programs.”

Sal de Vida is a tier-1 brine project located in Catamarca Province, on the Salar del Hombre Muerto, around 1,400km northwest of Buenos Aires, Argentina.

The project has a resource estimate of 7.2 million tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) with high grade and low levels of impurities.

It is located more than 4,000m above sea level and lies within the lithium triangle covering Chile, Bolivia, and Argentina, with a significant portion of the world’s estimated lithium resources.

The project will produce battery-grade lithium carbonate through an evaporation and processing operation at the Salar del Hombre Muerto site.

Allkem targets an initial production of 15,000tpa in the first stage, which can be extended to a 45,000tpa brine operation with an additional 30ktpa in the second stage.