Orocobre provides Olaroz Lithium Project Construction Update
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA -- (Marketwired) -- 05/28/13 -- Orocobre Limited
(TSX:ORL)(ASX:ORE) ("Orocobre" or "the Company") is pleased to
provide a progress report on the construction of the Company's
flagship Olaroz lithium project.
The construction of the Olaroz lithium project continues to progress
on time and within budget.
To view Image 1, please visit the following link:
Over the past month the following tasks have been completed:
-- Liming plant ground works and foundations.
-- Raw water pipeline.
-- Road and platforms on the salar.
The following tasks are in progress or commenced in May:
-- Foundations and metal structure fabrication for process plant buildings,
soda ash warehouse, finished product warehouse and maintenance
-- Raw water pumping station - Electrical control room installation.
-- Preparation for overhead power line construction in Area 4000-7000-8000.
-- Ground work and concrete foundations of water treatment plant.
-- Waste water treatment plant 2nd stage.
-- Mechanical erection of liming plant.
-- Brine Wells - drilling.
-- Brine pipeline - installation.
-- Site surveillance - access control.
-- Evaporation pond construction.
-- Vegetation removal and manual site clearance.
-- Ground work and concrete foundations for liming plant.
-- Liming plant structure - fabrication.
-- Ground work and concrete foundations for water plant.
-- Water plant tank construction.
-- Gas pipeline construction.
-- Definitive camp (supply and erection).
-- Definitive camp infrastructure construction.
-- Overflow channel construction.
-- Concrete supply on site.
-- Camp infrastructure (Sewage, water and power lines).
The following tasks are scheduled to begin in June and July:
-- Construction of process buildings (main building, soda ash and end
-- Liner installation at evaporation ponds.
-- Construction of reinforced earth gabions for transfer pumps foundations.
-- Construction of overhead power line - LMT Area 4000-7300-8000.
-- Construction of warehouse and maintenance workshop building.
Approximately $101m of the US$229m capital budget has been committed
or spent (up from $87m last month) and all major contracts awarded to
this point remain on, or under, budget. The process of tendering and
awarding contracts is on schedule.
The Company continues to follow the "Jujuy First" strategy to
successfully work with suppliers and the employment bureau to focus
on the hiring of local people from the communities of Olaroz,
Huancar, Puesto Sey, Pastos Chicos, Catua, Susques, Jama, El Toro,
Coranzuli, San Juan and Abrapampa. The engagement of the community
also extends to the provision of health services and programs to
encourage the continued education of young people.
The project implementation is through EPCM (Engineering, Procurement
and Construction Management) with a high proportion of local
involvement through construction and supply contracts and local
employment. The unique community and shared value policy continues as
a key success factor, training local people with supervision by high
quality experienced professionals.
The Olaroz lithium project is being developed by Orocobre (66.5%)
with partners Toyota Tsusho Corporation ("TTC") (25%) and the Jujuy
Province mining and energy company, JEMSE (8.5%) with a construction
budget of US$229m including contingency. The project is fully funded
with up to US$275m of funding available via US$82.8m of equity
funding from TTC and Orocobre and US$192m of project finance from
Mizuho Corporate Bank. First production is scheduled for the end of
the second quarter, 2014.
To view the Photos associated with this release, please visit the
following link: http://file.marketwire.com/release/orl529-Photos.pdf.
About Orocobre Limited
Orocobre Limited is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange and
Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX:ORL)(ASX:ORE), and is building a
substantial Argentinian-based industrial minerals company through the
construction and operation of its portfolio of lithium, potash and
boron projects and facilities in the Puna region of northern
Argentina. The Company is building in partnership with Toyota Tsusho
Corporation the first large-scale, "greenfield" brine based lithium
project in 20 years at its flagship Salar de Olaroz resource, with
projected production of 17,500 tonnes per annum of low-cost battery
grade lithium carbonate scheduled to commence in Q2 2014. The Company
also wholly-owns Borax Argentina, an important regional borate
producer. Orocobre has recently been included in the S&P/ASX 300
Index and was named 2012 Mining Company of the Year by Argentine
mining magazine Panorama Minero and the Fundacion para el desarrollo
de le Mineria Argentina ("Fundamin" or Foundation for Development of
Argentina Mining). For further information, please visit
Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Information
This news release contains "forward-looking information" within the
meaning of applicable securities legislation. Forward-looking
information contained in this release may include, but is not limited
to, the draw down of finance for the Olaroz Project, the completion
of construction at the Olaroz Project and the timing thereof, the
commencement of commercial production at the Olaroz Project and the
timing thereof, the cost of construction relative to the estimated
capital cost of the Olaroz Project, the design production rate for
lithium carbonate and potash at the Olaroz Project, the expected
brine grade at the Olaroz Project, the expected operating costs at
the Olaroz Project and the comparison of such expected costs to
expected global operating costs, and the ongoing working relationship
between Orocobre and the Province of Jujuy.
Such forward-looking information is subject to known and unknown
risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results
to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such
forward-looking information, including but not limited to the risk of
further changes in government regulations, policies or legislation;
the possibility that required concessions may not be obtained, or may
be obtained only on terms and conditions that are materially worse
than anticipated; the risk that the conditions precedent to draw down
the project financing with Mizuho Corporate Bank will not be met;
that further funding may be required, but unavailable, for the
ongoing development of the Company's projects; fluctuations or
decreases in commodity prices; uncertainty in the estimation,
economic viability, recoverability and processing of mineral
resources; risks associated with weather patterns and impact on
production rate; risks associated with construction and development
of the Olaroz Project; unexpected capital or operating cost
increases; uncertainty of meeting anticipated program milestones at
the Olaroz Project; general risks associated with the feasibility and
development of the Olaroz Project; as well as those factors disclosed
in the Company's Annual Information Form for the year ended June 30,
2012 filed at www.sedar.com.
The Company believes that the assumptions and expectations reflected
in such forward-looking information are reasonable. Assumptions have
been made regarding, among other things: the timely receipt of
required approvals and completion of agreements on reasonable terms
and conditions; the ability of the Company to obtain financing as and
when required and on reasonable terms and conditions; the prices of
lithium and potash; and the ability of the Company to operate in a
safe, efficient and effective manner. Readers are cautioned that the
foregoing list is not exhaustive of all factors and assumptions which
may have been used. There can be no assurance that forward-looking
information will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future
events could differ materially from those anticipated in such
information. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on
forward-looking information. The Company does not undertake to update
any forward-looking information, except in accordance with applicable
ABN 31 112 589 910
Australia and Asia
Business Development Manager
+61 7 3871 3985 or M:+61 407 845 052
James Calaway, Chairman
+1 (713) 818 1457
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