HARARE-� Australian mining company Latitude Consolidated has set sights on venturing into Zimbabwe and has entered into an agreement to acquire a gold and lithium project near Gwanda in Matabeleland South Province, about 530 kilometres southwest of here.
A number of lithium exploratory projects are currently ongoing in Zimbabwe, with government having recently signed a deal to explore an estimated 1.4 billion worth of deposits in Matabeleland North Province.
Lithium is used to make lightweight, efficient batteries and some of its compounds have also been used to treat a mental disorder known as bipolar disorder.
The Gwanda project is said to consist of 13 mineral claims with a combined area of 18 square kilometres, part of which is reportedly owned by a Zimbabwean called Robert Hutchings who has agreed to sell out to Latitude Consolidated, primarily a gold mining company.
The company is exploring new opportunities and looking to mobilise 3.45 million Australian dollars (about 2.7 million US dollars) on the Australian Stock Exchange for the project through a placement of more than 138 million shares.
As part of the transaction, Latitude will complete a two-tranche share placement to raise a total of 3.45 million AUD from investors --$491,000 AUD upfront and 2.95 million AUD subject to shareholder approval, reports say.
Sampling done in Gwanda had shown that it contained high-grade lithium deposits. Mining of lithium, described as a hot commodity because of rising demand, is on the rise in Zimbabwe with another Australian
listed company, Prospect Resources, also pushing a project to begin full mining of the mineral by year end.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK