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US companies incentivised to buy up Australian lithium and other battery minerals mines – MinRes

Lithium and iron ore mining magnate Chris Ellison is urging the Australian government to do more for the battery metals industry, suggesting US companies are being incentivised by the US government to buy up local lithium and battery metals mines in Aus.

The Financial Review reports Mr Ellison, Chairman of MinRes (ASX: MIN), suggested Joe Bidens ‘Inflation Reduction Act’ – which includes billions of dollars in incentives for green minerals investment, was encouraging US companies to create sophisticated downstream battery metals industry, and sourcing the raw materials from Down Under.

Chris Ellison-led MinRes was in Canberra lobbying Treasury officials on Wednesday as Charlotte-headquartered Albemarle faced the prospect of having to increase its $5.5 billion bid for Liontown, reporter Brad Thompson wrote.

The West Australian newspaper also supported the reporting, with reporter Danielle Le Messurier writing that representatives from MinRes “were in Canberra on Wednesday to submit a pre-Budget policy document advising the Government on the “international realities” and “practical steps” needed to secure investment downstream in the battery chemical supply chain.”

Ellisons MinRes has been lobbying Canberra to do more to create manufacturing for battery metals in Australia before the entire industry moved to the US and to the EU, where central figures were also encouraging battery and car manufacturing downstream industry investment.

“It will now be more challenging for Australia to move much further down the lithium-ion value chain and for Australian companies to convince overseas joint venture partners and investors to invest in Australia, MinRes wrote in the submission to the Canberra government.

Lithium and iron ore billionaire Chris Ellison wants Australia to wake up and invest in the battery minerals downstream industry. The US government is encouraging US companies to buy up Australian mining companies and Canberra needs to do more, the ARF and The West Australian newspapers reported. Photo from The Australian reporting

Canberra is promising to pass legislation soon which will see $15 billion in incentives for electric car manufacturers.

Federal Minister for Industry and Science Ed Husic elaborated, stating “we’ve got all these resources, and yet, we do not extract the greatest value out of the battery value chain”.

“If we get the battery value chain right in this country, it could create up to 60,000 jobs,” he claimed, as reported in The Canberra Times this week.

It comes as US-listed chemicals company Albemarle looked to buy Liontown resources in a $5.5 billion Australian dollar offer. Stock in Liontown (ASX: LTR) surged to $2.59 this week, creating multi-millionaires from even small investments made just 2-years ago.

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