[ferro-alloys.com]Billionaire investors are being encouraged to visit WA to see the energy revolution that the Government hopes will power the State’s economy.
The Opposition has branded the strategy a plan for a plan, but Premier Mark McGowan says if it works we can expect thousands of jobs and billions in revenue for WA.
It’s the new age boom in the West that has turned Australia into the world’s biggest producer of lithium.
The State is also the third biggest producer of cobalt and the fifth biggest producer of nickel.
All minerals used for to make batteries and Mr McGowan wants to do more than dig them up, promising that downstream processing will re-charge the economy.
“Thousands of jobs, billions of dollars of investment, an industry that’s part of the future,” he said.
The Tianqi Lithium factory in Kwinana will turn lithium mineral that is worth $1100/tonne into lithium hydroxide worth 20 times more.
Currently that material is still sent overseas for manufacturing and then returns to WA in finished products.
The State Government has unveiled a future battery strategy including $6 million if a research centre is built in WA. And a plan for an investment attraction strategy but no new money.
Opposition Leader Mike Nahan is not impressed by the document.
“It does weigh a bit, there’s a paper and some ink on it but nothing new,” Dr Nahan said.
But Mr McGowan has defended the plan.
“What it requires is willpower - you don’t just have to throw money at things,” he said.
More than 1.2 million electric cars were sold globally in 2017, up 57 per cent in a single year.
It is a growing market WA wants a bigger piece of, the ultimate aim to build the complete battery here.
“I think it’s unlimited, I think we gotta start dreaming bigger,” George Bauk, managing director of Northern Minerals, said.
(The West Australian)