Jeremy Wrathall via PAJeremy Wrathall via PA


Lithium mine firm boss hails £24m investment as boost for UK EV sector and car supply chain

  • UK Infrastructure Bank ploughs £24m into Cornish Lithium
  • Lithium mine to be built in Cornwall
  • Domestic source of lithium seen as vital for UK car industry

Time 11:26 am, August 9, 2023

The founder of mineral exploration and development firm Cornish Lithium says a new multi-million-pound investment will boost the UK’s car manufacturing supply chain as well as its competitiveness in the EV sector.

The state-owned UK Infrastructure Bank has ploughed £24m into a project that will see a lithium mine built in Cornwall.

Cornish Lithium said it had now raised £53.6m from three investors, including the first equity investment – where an investor provides money in return for shares – by the UK Infrastructure Bank.

US private equity investor Energy & Minerals Group invested around £24m and Cornish Lithium has received an extra £5.6m from current shareholder TechMet, which is partly backed by the US government, bringing TechMet’s total investment to £23.6m.

Cornish Lithium founder and CEO Jeremy Wrathall, pictured at top, said: ‘As well as creating job opportunities and fostering innovation, the investment signals confidence in our ambitions and will drive forward the modern-day renaissance of Cornwall’s 4,000-year mining heritage.

‘It is also a positive development for the UK’s automotive industry and green industrial revolution.

‘A domestic source of lithium will strengthen the UK’s car manufacturing supply chain and improve its competitiveness while reducing the carbon footprint associated with the manufacture of batteries and electric vehicles.’

UK Infrastructure Bank CEO John Flint said: ‘Our investment in Cornish Lithium perfectly encapsulates a key part of our mission – to drive forward new and emerging markets that the UK will rely on to meet its net zero goals, and which will deliver an enduring and positive impact on local economies.

‘Globally, the supply of lithium is far outpaced by demand, and yet in the UK it remains a nascent market.

‘Our investment has already crowded in private sector financing, which will greatly accelerate domestic production of a mineral that is critical to the future of EV battery production and decarbonisation of the transport sector.’

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John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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