The US giant Albemarle would be interested in starting negotiations on increasing state control of Chili on the production of lithium in the Salar de Atacama”as soon as possible”, said the Minister of Mining, Marcela Hernando, on Tuesday.
The government launched a plan in April with which it seeks to have a majority stake in the projects of lithium considered strategic, including current operations in the vast salt flat, for which the companies would have to voluntarily accept a dialogue.
“They have stated only verbally that their interest is to start the negotiations as soon as possible and we are going to be vigilant for that to happen.”, the official told reporters after a presentation of a report on lithium.
“It is necessary to emphasize that the State will respect the contract currently in force until 2043, and that Codelco will be in charge of carrying out these conversations”, the ministry specified in a later statement sent to Reuters.
The state company Codelco, designated by the government to negotiate the increase of state control in the industry, recently began talks with the local SQM about his contract, which expires in 2030.
The start of negotiationswill depend on Albemarle and Codelcobut we are interested in leaving as soon as possible, but they have more time, until 2043“, said hernandocited in the statement.
Albemarle said in early May that it is open to renegotiating its lithium contract in Chile before 2043 and would seek access to more deposits in the South American country.
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