Chinese mining billionaire to invest $300 million on Zim lithium


Shanghai-listed mining company Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt, controlled by billionaire Chen Xuehua, will invest $300 million into its Arcadia lithium mine near Harare, Zimbabwe, according to a Reuters report, citing the company’s documents.

Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe, the holding company of the Arcadia project, will use the investment to rapidly develop the lithium mine and construct a plant with a processing capacity of 4.5 million tonnes of ore and a production capacity of 400,00 tonnes of lithium concentrate per year.

During the construction period, Prospect Lithium Zimbabwe will employ 600 local workers, which will be increased to 900 people once production begins. The Arcadia project is slated for commencing delivery of its first batch of production next year.

Prosper Chitambara, senior research economist of the Labour and Economic Development Research Institute of Zimbabwe, says the investment is an important development for Zimbabwe with significant multiplier effects including employment creation, contribution to fiscal revenues and foreign currency generation through exports.

“The investment also has a strong industrialization element with the planned setting up of a processing plant which will ensure that the country maximizes value retention,” Chitambara said.


Huayou Cobalt completed the acquisition of Arcadia in April 2022 from Australia-listed Prospect Resources and Zimbabwean minority shareholders for $422 million. As of October 2021, the Arcadia project had 15.8 million tonnes of measured lithium resources and 11.8 million tonnes of proven lithium reserves. Forbes.


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