US Lithium producer Albermarle has found itself in hot water over lithium pricing with Corfo, Chile’s state development agency. The agency is planning to file an arbitration suit against the American company, claiming that Albermarle has failed to adhere to the terms of one of their contracts dating as far back at 2016.
The contract in question specifies that Albermarle must provide up to 25% of its annual production at a reduced rate to businesses that are planning to produce battery metals within Chile. This is part of the governments intentions to create a local lithium industry and increase the value add of the total supply chain.
Sebastian Sichel, Corfo’s Vice President has stated that Albermarles initial price offer is too high and has thus violated the terms of the contract. Albermarle has also decided to hold off on plans to increase output capacity in its Chile based operations, instead focusing on plans to expand its Lithium Hydroxide plant in Kemerton, Western Australia.