Serbia to Give Green Light for Rio Tinto Lithium Mine

The Jadar site in the west of Serbia. Photo: Rio Tinto website
The Jadar site in the west of Serbia. Photo: Rio Tinto website
TT

Serbia to Give Green Light for Rio Tinto Lithium Mine

The Jadar site in the west of Serbia. Photo: Rio Tinto website
The Jadar site in the west of Serbia. Photo: Rio Tinto website

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic is preparing to give Rio Tinto the green light to develop Europe's largest lithium mine two years after Belgrade called off the project, the Financial Times said on Sunday.
Vucic told the newspaper that "new guarantees" from the global mining giant and the European Union looked set to address Serbia’s concerns over whether necessary environmental standards would be met at the Jadar site in the west of the country.
Rio Tinto said in a statement emailed to Reuters: "We believe the Jadar Project has the potential to be a world-class asset that could act as a catalyst for developing an EV (electric vehicle) value chain in Serbia".
Regarded as a critical material by the EU and the United States, lithium is used in batteries for EVs and mobile devices.
"If we deliver on everything, (the mine) might be open in 2028" Vucic told the FT, adding that the mine was projected to produce 58,000 tons of lithium per year which would be "enough for 17% of EV production in Europe — approximately 1.1 million cars."
In 2022, Belgrade revoked licenses for Rio's $2.4 billion Jadar project after massive environmental protests. If completed, the project could supply 90% of Europe's current lithium needs and help to make the company a leading lithium producer.
In 2021 and 2022 Serbian environmentalists collected 30,000 signatures in a petition demanding that parliament enact legislation to halt lithium exploration in the country.



Saudi Arabia Unveils Extensive Mineralized Belts for Exploration Firms

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources is inviting local and international companies to participate in the Exploration Licensing for launched mineralized belts (Reuters)
Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources is inviting local and international companies to participate in the Exploration Licensing for launched mineralized belts (Reuters)
TT

Saudi Arabia Unveils Extensive Mineralized Belts for Exploration Firms

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources is inviting local and international companies to participate in the Exploration Licensing for launched mineralized belts (Reuters)
Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources is inviting local and international companies to participate in the Exploration Licensing for launched mineralized belts (Reuters)

Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources has unveiled its largest mineralized belts to date, spanning 4.7 thousand square kilometers and including five new exploration licenses.
The Ministry is inviting major mining and exploration companies to participate in the current Exploration Licensing Rounds, aiming to unlock the extensive mineral wealth of these belts.
The Ministry’s spokesperson, Jarrah Al-Jarrah, emphasized that this initiative underscores Saudi Arabia’s commitment to strengthening its mining and minerals sector and creating investment opportunities.

The five available exploration licenses are part of the Ministry’s strategy to boost exploration investment and support Vision 2030 objectives, which aim to position mining as a key industry in the Kingdom.
These licenses cover significantly larger areas than previous rounds and are targeted at high-net-worth companies with developed base and precious metal mines.
Saudi Arabia is seeking investors capable of exploring and discovering large, tier-1 deposits within approximately 1,000 square kilometers of exploration licenses. The Kingdom’s infrastructure and competitive financing options make it well-positioned to develop new tier-1 sites.
The Ministry is inviting local and international companies to participate in the Exploration Licensing for the following mineralized belts:
- Jabal Sayid: Three exploration licenses covering 2,892 square kilometers. The belt contains copper, zinc, lead, gold, and silver.
- Al-Hajjar: Two exploration licenses at the Wadi Shwas VMS Belt, covering 1,896 square kilometers. This site holds deposits of gold, silver, copper, and zinc.
Al-Jarrah highlighted that Jabal Sayid and Al-Hajjar are the largest mineralized belt sites ever launched by the Kingdom.
The bidding process for the exploration licenses will be transparent and conducted in stages, beginning with pre-qualification from July to October 2024.
Qualified bidders will then submit technical proposals and social and environmental impact management plans by December 2024, with the winners announced and licenses granted in January 2025.