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Intimately linked with the national security of Western nations. Access to critical minerals is essential to any country hoping to gain or maintain technological superiority over its rivals – a fact that China was distinctly aware of when it moved to buy up the industry over a decade ago. But now a fightback is underway.
Around the world, governments are racing to secure their critical mineral supply chains as they invest heavily in new exploration and production.In fact, Canada was so concerned about critical minerals supply that it forced three Chinese companies to sell their mining assets in the country. And as these countries move to combat China, the non-Chinese companies sitting on the strategically vital resources are becoming increasingly important.
In Canada, for example, when the Chinese companies were forced to divest their ownership interests in the country – one Canadian miner, PowerMetals Corp (PWM,PWRMF), was left in control of not only a potential high-quality lithium mine but what might become the only functioning cesium mine in the world that China doesn’t own. And while cesium may not be as well-known as lithium, it is undoubtedly critical.
Cesium is central to the United States’ goal of winning the 5G race, it plays a key role in aircraft guidance systems, oil and gas drilling, and global positioning satellites. And despite its importance, all the known cesium deposits around the world have either been depleted, or the mines have been rendered inoperable.
All of this could leave PowerMetals Corp and its Case Lake project as one of the most unique and exciting natural resource plays in the world today.
It isn’t just the geopolitical context and resource quality that makes PowerMetals Corp (PWM,PWRMF) such an intriguing prospect. The miner’s main exploration project has been described by the company’s Chairman as a “geologist’s dream” and the equivalent of “prime real estate on Park Avenue”. It’s accessible year-round by well-maintained roads, with all infrastructure in place, a real rarity in the mining industry. Nearly all discoveries in Canada’s critical metals market have been made in extremely remote areas. But at the Case Lake prospect, not only is all the road and electrical infrastructure already in place, but it even boasts cell phone signals – a benefit that is unheard of in most mining venues.
According to Power Metals, Case Lake is one of the most inexpensive properties to drill in Canada—not just because of its easy access, either. The cesium, lithium, and tantalum intersections here are in pegmatite that is exposed on the surface and running so shallow that it is less than 50 meters deep in various areas. It’s a story that seems to keep getting better.