Lynas Corporation (ASX: LYC) announced on Monday that it will build a rare earths processing plant at Kalgoorlie, expected to be complete by late-2022 or early the following year.
The plant would reshore cracking and leaching operations from Malaysia, and process rare earth materials from the company’s Mt Weld mine at Laverton, roughly 300 kilometres away. Concentrate created there is currently driven to port to be shipped to Malaysia for further processing.
According to the company, the new Kalgoorlie site would require 500 jobs in construction and 200 once operations began.
Lynas said it would also explore the possibilities of upstream solvent extraction processing within Western Australia.
“There’s a little bit we need to do to solve a number of challenges to be able to do that,” chief executive Amanda Lacaze told AAP.
Lynas currently runs the Mt Weld concentration plant for niobium, tantalum, titanium, rare earths and zirconium, as well as a technical office in Perth, and an advanced materials plant at Kuantan, Malaysia. It is the only significant rare earths processor outside of China.
Picture: Mt Weld mine (Lynas)
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