By the end of June, the Center is anticipated to release an RFP for the recently discovered lithium reserves in Jammu, said an official.
The action may grant India access to the strategic mineral, which is used, among other things, in electric vehicles (EVs) and mobile devices. The report stated that the discoveries are divided into four stages, as per the United Nations Framework Classification (UNFC), namely G4 (reconnaissance), G3 (prospecting), G2 (general exploration), and G1 (depth exploration).
“[This is a] G-3 level find, which means we are sure of significant reserves and, hence, starting the process to mine this critical non-ferrous metal soon,” said an official.
The country, presently, ranks as the seventh-largest holder of lithium reserves thanks to the discovery of 5.9 million tonnes of the metal in Reasi, Jammu and Kashmir. The official further said that the Center will require that only domestic refineries use the reserves. Lithium refinement is not now possible in India.
India needs lithium to further its objectives for the energy transformation. It is an essential part of the lithium-ion rechargeable batteries used in EVs. Presently, 75% of the world’s lithium refining is under Chinese control. Lithium for India is sourced from the US, China, and Hong Kong. Cost of the metal has increased the stakes.