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Hastings Technology Metals and engineering services company thyssenkrupp have expanded their offtake services contract for the Yangibana rare earths project in WA.

The contract was originally signed in April 2021 and will now be expanded to align with Stage 1 development of the project.

thyssenkrupp has committed to increasing its volume to two-thirds of Yangibana’s annual production volume for the first five years, commencing in the second quarter of 2025.

“Building on our strong relationship with thyssenkrupp, we are pleased to have extended the terms of the offtake to increase the committed volume and include concentrate as well as MREC from Stage 1 of the Yangibana Project to meet bankability requirements,” Hastings executive chairman Charles Lew said.

“We are at an advanced stage of finalising the optimal project debt finance and this commitment from thyssenkrupp reiterates the cooperative spirit in which we work with our long term partners to reach our objective of bringing Yangibana into production”.

Yangibana is currently progressing in a staged capacity, in hopes that the strategy will reduce upfront capital requirements and project execution risks.

The project capital cost has been increased to $948 million, a 40 per cent increase from the 2020–21 estimate.

“The Yangibana rare earths project is one of the world’s most advanced greenfield rare earth projects and is well-timed to meet the forecast supply gap for magnet rare earth elements which are required to support the global transition to clean energy,” Lew said.

“The implementation of a two-stage development strategy for Yangibana will lower the upfront capital funding requirements, reduce the project execution risk and enable a faster pathway to early project cash flows which can be used to fund stage two plant construction.”