Australia’s Wesfarmers Chemicals, Energy and Fertilisers (WesCEF) has signed an agreement to supply up to 85,000 tonnes of lithium concentrate to South Korean battery company LG Energy Solution.

This is LG Energy Solution’s second offtake agreement with WesCEF, following their first five-year deal signed in 2022 for 50,000 tonnes of battery-grade lithium hydroxide.

The latest agreement further expands LG Energy Solution’s supply chain for competitive lithium procurement.

According to the battery company, the latest procurement could be utilised to produce around 11,000 tonnes of lithium hydroxide, a key raw material for cathodes.

LG Energy Solution Procurement Center senior vice-president Kang Yeol Lee said: “As an industry leader, in line with the global trend of electrification and corresponding clean energy policies, we are upholding the value of sustainability in not just our products but every aspect of our business, including supply chain.

“Partnering with major suppliers with great potentials like WesCEF, we will ensure stable procurement of key raw materials, thereby delivering advanced battery technologies at competitive prices.”

The lithium hydroxide for the agreement will be delivered by the Mt. Holland lithium project in Western Australia. The project, currently under construction, is expected to begin production in the first half of 2025.

WesCEF and joint venture partner Sociedad Química y Minera (SQM) have committed more than A$2bn ($1.3bn) for the development of the lithium project.

Covalent Lithium has been appointed as the manager to develop and operate the project.

Apart from offtake agreements, LG Energy Solution and WesCEF are assessing collaboration opportunities in upstream minerals and chemical processing.