Rock Tech Lithium advances with approval for Germany’s first lithium refinery


Rock Tech Lithium Inc. has achieved a significant milestone by obtaining all necessary construction and operational permits for its lithium refinery in Guben, Germany. This development marks a crucial step towards establishing Europe’s first lithium converter, set to produce 24,000 tonnes of lithium hydroxide annually—a key component for electric vehicle batteries and energy storage systems.

Official Handover of Permits

The official handover of the permits was conducted at a meeting in the State Chancellery in Potsdam, attended by Axel Vogel, Brandenburg’s Minister for Climate Action and Environment, and Joerg Steinbach, Minister for Economic Affairs. Rock Tech’s CEO Dirk Harbecke, along with Guben’s Mayor Fred Mahro and other representatives from Rock Tech, received the approvals, highlighting the collaborative effort behind this project.

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Project Details and Strategic Importance

The construction and operation license marks a substantial leap forward for Rock Tech and the European battery supply chain. “The construction and operating licence for our lithium refinery is a strong signal for Rock Tech and Europe,” stated CEO Dirk Harbecke. The project is now moving into its final financing stage, with subsidy negotiations and equity discussions expected to conclude soon, leading to a final investment decision (FID) targeted for Q3 of this year.

Rock Tech Lithium secures all permits for constructing Germany's first lithium hydroxide refinery in Guben, setting a blueprint for global projects.

Rock Tech Lithium secures all permits for constructing Germany’s first lithium hydroxide refinery in Guben, setting a blueprint for global projects.

Minister Steinbach expressed his support, noting, “The future production of Lithium-Hydroxide in Guben represents a further building block in the creation of an EV value-chain that is currently being established in Brandenburg.”

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Expansion and New Appointments

In addition to the refinery’s progress, Rock Tech announced the appointment of Derek Sobel as the new Chief Financial Officer, effective June 1, 2024. Sobel, who has been with Rock Tech since 2021, brings extensive financial expertise to his new role, following Sonja Rossteuscher in the position.

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Looking Ahead

Rock Tech plans to expand its lithium converter operations beyond Germany, with a second facility proposed in Red Rock, Ontario, Canada. The company aims to source raw materials from its wholly-owned Georgia Lake spodumene project in Ontario, as well as from other responsibly producing mines, ensuring a transparent and efficient supply chain for its customers.

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