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ASX-listed European Lithium has signed an offtake agreement with automotive manufacturer BMW for the supply of battery-grade lithium hydroxide from its Wolfsburg lithium project, in Austria.

Under the agreement, BMW has the first right to purchase all of the lithium hydroxide produced from the identified resource at Wolfsberg. The automotive major will make a $15-million advance payment which will be repaid through equal set offs against lithium delivered.

The offtake agreement is subject to the start of commercial production and full product qualifications and certification.

A 2018 prefeasibility study estimated that the project could produce some 10 129 t/y of lithium hydroxide over a mine life of more than ten years, based on a mining rate of 720 000 t/y. European Lithium is targeting the start of lithium hydroxide production by the first quarter of 2025, subject to funding and approvals.