Canadian cobalt developer Global Energy Metals (TSX.V:GEMC) issued a corporate update on Wednesday that saw it highlight the rise of electric vehicles (EVs) as ‘a once in a generation investment opportunity’.
The business, which has built a portfolio of cobalt projects in stable jurisdictions, said the transportation and energy storage industries are set to undergo a ‘profound transformation’ over the coming decades. An ongoing shift from fossil-fuelled to electric-powered vehicles is being accelerated by considerable amounts of investment from businesses and consumers alike. According to Global Energy, cobalt is critical to the continuation of this trend, with demand expected to increase substantially due to its heavy use in lithium-ion batteries.
However, the firm does not believe that supply will be able to keep up with this demand. This is because much of the world’s cobalt is sourced from the DRC- a nation known for its conflict, artisanal mining, and human rights violations. Likewise, cobalt is often mined as a byproduct, meaning supply is very much tied to conditions in the market for other metals such as nickel and copper.
As such, Global Energy’s president and CEO Mitchell Smith said the raw materials and companies powering the shift towards the electrification of vehicles present ‘a once in a generation investment opportunity’, adding:
‘Lithium-ion batteries are at the heart of the current and future energy transition. Batteries that are powered by cobalt are critical to the future of the eMobility revolution. To get exposure to the battery and energy storage opportunity, maybe the biggest investment growth opportunity there is at the moment, one needs to look at the companies securing the metals critical to the space. Global Energy offers that exposure at a basement level entry cost.’
Global Energy also provided a recap of its operations over the last six months. The period notably saw the firm take 100pc ownership of its flagship Millennium cobalt project in the Mount Isa region of Queensland, Australia. As part of the deal, the firm also took on two exploration assets called Mt. Dorothy and Cobalt Ridge, increasing its land position in Queensland considerably.
Following the deal, which was completed with ASX-listed business Hammer Metals, Global Energy filed a technical report for Millennium highlights its upside opportunity and resource expansion potential. It also formed a partnership with industry peer Cobalt Blue Holdings to investigate the site’s cobalt, copper, and gold recovery potential in full. The results of this work are pending.
Elsewhere, Global Energy has also taken significant steps forward at its Nevada-based cobalt, nickel, and copper properties Lovelock and Treasure Box. In early summer, the firm began an exploration program including airborne surveying, digital modelling, underground sampling and mapping, and fieldwork at the assets – which are located near Tesla’s Gigafactory.
It also acquired the right to use technology owned by TSX-listed Canada Cobalt Works called RE-20X at the properties. This skips the normal smelting process to provide high recovery rates for cobalt, nickel, and copper to ultimately create battery-grade cobalt sulphate.
Finally, the six-month period saw Global Energy attend several key industry events around the world in a bid to spread its message. These included the 2019 China Mining Summit and CRU Ryan’s Ferroalloys Conference.
Author: Daniel Flynn
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