The government has granted the nation’s first lithium mining lease to Barari DV Ghana Limited, a subsidiary of Atlantic Lithium Limited, to commence construction and mining operations in the Central Region.
The 15-year lease incorporates enhanced terms intended to optimise Ghana’s earnings from its lithium resources. This includes a 10% royalty rate, increased state participation and requirements for domestic value addition.
Speaking at the signing ceremony in Accra, the Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Mr Samuel Abu Jinapor, stated that the government decided lithium should not be treated the same as other minerals. As such, a special policy was developed and cabinet-approved before issuing the mining lease.
The Minister said the government recognises mining’s impacts and was committed to ensuring communities and Ghanaians benefit from the country’s mineral wealth. He urged the company to adhere to laws and conduct sustainable, environmentally responsible mining.
The new lithium policy raises the state’s free carried interest from 10% to 13%. Additionally, the government, through the Minerals Income Investment Fund, would acquire a further 6% of the mining operation and 3.06% of the parent company listed in Australia and London.
The company would also be mandated to list on the Ghana Stock Exchange for local investment participation and a stipulated 1% revenue payment into community development funds for impacted areas.
Significantly, the lease requires the company to construct a domestic chemical plant for lithium processing or supply any lithium mined to third-party processing plants in Ghana. This aims to foster job creation and local value addition.
The Ewoyaa deposit was discovered in 2017 and has high-grade lithium reserves. Lithium is a key mineral for lithium-ion batteries, replacing fossil fuels for global green energy transition.
Ghana is undertaking initiatives to derive maximum state revenue and local development benefits from its untapped lithium resources.
The enhanced lease represents efforts to strategically leverage the mineral for national progress.
Richard Aniagyei, ISD