High purity manganese processing company Euro Manganese (TSX-V / ASX: EMN) has confirmed that shipment of its demonstration plant is underway. The plant is being shipped in two batches by sea, a change from the original rail transportation plans, which were affected by the Russia-Ukraine conflict.
Regular readers of The Armchair Trader will know that Euro Manganese has been making steady progress with an exciting waste-to-value project that involves reprocessing historic mine tailings in Central Europe to extract manganese.
The company’s goal is to become a leading, competitive and environmentally superior primary producer of high-purity manganese products in the heart of Europe, serving the lithium-ion battery industry, as well as other high-technology applications. Euro Manganese’s Chvaletice project is Europe’s only sizable manganese resource and the company is set to become the main producer of high purity manganese in Europe. Consequently, the company has been backed by major EU institutions, including the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and EIT InnoEnergy.
Delivery of the shipments are expected on site in June and July respectively. Assembly of the plant modules will begin as soon as the deliveries are made. Completion of commissioning and start of the demonstration plant is expected in September. First shipments to customers are expected by the end of the year.
“Our near-term focus remains on the delivery of sample products from our pilot plant, followed by larger samples from the demonstration plant once it commences production,” said Dr Matthew James, CEO of Euro Manganese. “This will allow customers to continue or initiate their supply chain qualification.”
The company has five Memorandum of Understanding (MOUs) agreements in place, which are advancing to offtake contracts. First announcements of offtake contracts are expected in Q3 this year.
Euro Manganese started its second quarter with C$31.2m in the bank [see note 1 below]. The EBRD (European Bank of Reconstruction and Development) made an investment with net proceeds C$8.2m – the EBRD now holds approximately 5.4% of the equity in the company – proceeds will go towards completing the environmental impact assessment, plant commissioning and one year of operations.
The net smelter royalty buy out from the original owners’ Czech subsidiary was also completed in Q2. This eliminates US$91.1 million in expenditures over the project’s 25-year life.
Listen: Podcast with Marco Romero, Euro Manganese
Land access and re-zoning for the project
Significant progress has been made with local municipal approvals for land access and rezoning. The Municipality of Chvaletice approved land access agreement terms that grants Euro Manganese access to approximately 15% of the total tailings area. Access to the plant site is already 100% secured via purchase or option. The company said it is progressing negotiations on land access agreements for the remaining surface rights.
The majority of land on which the project is located has now been rezoned for mining use. The Municipality of Trnavka, on which approximately 85% of the project’s tailings are located, formally approved the rezoning of the land for mining use in March 2022.
The remaining area of the underlying land falls under the authority of the municipality of Chvaletice and Euro Manganese says it anticipates that the rezoning of the Chvaletice land underlying the project’s tailings deposit will be formally approved for mining by year-end 2022.
: Euro Manganese has an offset year end of September 30. The company announced its Q2 results on May 15 2022.