Primero Group has secured a contract worth about A$64m ($41m) from Pilbara Minerals pertaining to the next phase of the P680 expansion project at its Pilgangoora lithium mine in Western Australia.

Awarded through Pilbara Minerals’ wholly owned subsidiary Pilgangoora Operations (POPL), the contract is for structural, mechanical, piping, electrical and instrumentation construction for the second stage of the P680 expansion project.

Besides, Primero, which is a fully-owned subsidiary of Australian mining contractor NRW, will deliver the construction of the crushing and ore sorting facilities.

Furthermore, Primero will assist the Australian lithium project by providing commissioning, integration, and shutdown support.

The new award follows a formal early contractor involvement (ECI) phase to determine construction methodology, cost, and schedule.

Primero aims to complete the execution of the contract in the third quarter of next year and expects to start works with immediate effect.

Primero managing director Michael Gollschewski said: “It is pleasing for Primero to be awarded this contract following the combined efforts of Primero and POPL teams in the successful delivery of the first stage of the P680 Expansion.”

Located 120km from Port Hedland, the Pilgangoora operation consists of two processing plants, one of which is the Pilgan plant for producing spodumene and tantalite concentrates. The second is the Ngungaju plant, which has been built for producing a spodumene concentrate.

Earlier this year, Primero secured a contract worth about A$62m ($39.4m) for work at the Pilgan lithium processing plant.

The scope of the contract included the upgradation of the Pilgan plant with the construction of a new primary rejection facility and preliminary work in connection with a new crushing and ore sorting facility.

NRW managing director Jules Pemberton said: “This award continues to build on the long association between Pilbara Minerals and Primero that began with the design and construction of the original Pilgan Plant and continues with the delivery of the P680 Expansion Project.”