• Rio in offtake deals with Ford, considers lithium exploration in WA
  • Morella raises $7.5m to advance Fish Lake Valley project in Nevada
  • Anson stakes 556 new claims around Paradox project in Utah

All your ASX lithium news for Monday, July 25


Last week everyone’s second favourite mining giant Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) signed a deal with motor giant Ford for a “significant lithium off-take agreement” from its recent US$825m acquisition in the Rincon project in Argentina.

Turns out that was a good pick up considering the company’s attempts to develop the Jadar mine in Serbia have so far fallen flat.

And it’s not the only attempt the miner has made to search for lithium facing strong local community opposition.

Rio’s recent bid to explore for battery metals including lithium and nickel in Jarrah Forest near Dwellingup in Western Australia have also been met with 1,500 separate objections to the 10 tenements.

Rio is the lone major which has dipped its toe into lithium, which BHP (ASX:BHP) has so far shunned.

It’s part of the miner’s re-focus on battery metals – even Rio’s chief executive minerals Sinead Kaufman is set to provide a keynote presentation at Benchmark Minerals Intelligence’s upcoming Battery Gigafactories Asia Pacific conference in September in Perth.


Here’s how ASX lithium stocks were tracking today:

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Fairly even day across the board. A total of 42 stocks were in the green, 46 were flat and 43 were red.


Who’s got news out today?



The company says it has received firm commitments for a $7.5m placement, including a A$3m cornerstone commitment from global lithium investment group Waratah Electrification and Decarbonization Fund.

Most of the funds will go towards drilling targets identified at the Fish Lake Valley Lithium Project in Nevada and advancing the development of future drilling targets in WA.

Plus, the private sale of royalties over the Tabba Tabba, and Mt Edon projects to Waratah-affiliate Lithium Royalty Corp. further solidifies Morella’s balance sheet and extends the growth runway,  CEO Alex Cheeseman said.

“It is a testament to the team and portfolio we have built that we have gained the support of a premier, lithium specialty investor and we are very pleased to be partnering with LRC and Waratah,” he said.

Following completion of the capital raise and receipt of first round royalty payments, Morella will have a cash balance of around $11.5M.



Anson has moved to expand its footprint by 36% to 167km2, staking 556 new claims on the western edge of its Paradox project area.

This comes as the company plans to kick off the western component of its resource expansion strategy by re-entering and drilling the Mineral Canyon Fed 1-3 and Sunburst 1 wells.

The aim is essentially converting existing Inferred resources and exploration targets into Indicated and Inferred resources.

Should the two wells confirm the extension of the lithium-rich brines to the western end of the project, Anson may increase the resource area of influence to 3km in the Clastic Zone 31 and the Mississippian units.

The company says this would deliver a significant milestone to the project resources, and result in a significant part of the project area being classified in the Indicated Resource category.



Another US-based player, Jindalee has started drilling at its McDermitt project in Oregon, with 28 holes planned to infill and extend the mineral resource of 1.82 Bt at 1,370 ppm lithium for 13.3 Mt Lithium Carbonate Equivalent (LCE).

A diamond rig has commenced drilling, with an RC rig expected to arrive on-site in September and first assays in October.



The company says the Horse Rocks Lithium Project tenement grant has moved to the final phase of the approval process and initial exploration programs are being finalised.

Notably, Horse rocks is 8km west of and shares the same source granite as Mineral Resources (ASX:MIN) Mt. Marion Lithium Mine.

Once the tenement has been granted, LRD has planned a comprehensive geochemical program to test for near-surface lithium anomalism.


1MC, ASN, JRL and LRD share prices today:




At Stockhead we tell it like it is. While Anson Resources is a Stockhead advertiser, it did not sponsor this article.