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Cobalt - August 5, 2022
Today sees the publication of the Cobalt Institute’s Quarterly Cobalt Market Update.

The Cobalt Institute commissioned CRU – a leading business intelligence agency – to look at the global trends in cobalt demand, supply and production in Q2 2022…Key highlights…NEV demand fights against broader automotive headwinds…Cobalt supply from the DRC strengthens and Chinese metal output returns…Prices fall as demand softens in China from Covid-19 lockdowns…Click blue title to access PDF 

Benchmark - August 5, 2022
The proposed US Inflation Reduction Act promises $369 billion for climate and clean energy policies, but also sets an ambitious target to extract and process key battery minerals locally. The Senator Joe Manchin led change to the Build Back Better Act zeroes in on the lithium ion battery to EV suppl

The proposed US Inflation Reduction Act promises $369 billion for climate and clean energy policies, but also sets an ambitious target to extract and process key battery minerals locally…The Senator Joe Manchin led change to the Build Back Better Act zeroes in on the lithium ion battery to EV supply chain with tax incentives and efforts to drive localisation…The bill includes an extension of the $7,500 tax credit relief for new electric vehicles beyond the current 200,000 vehicle cap. But it stipulates they have to be built with North America or trade agreement critical minerals, including lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel and manganese…The bill says not less than two-fifths of the critical minerals used in electric vehicle batteries should be extracted and processed locally in the US or with a free trade agreement (FTA) partner, or recycled in North America. It includes provisions to ramp up this requirement to 80% in 2026…The bill also includes a 10% Advanced Manufacturing production tax credit across the breadth of the lithium ion supply chain, which would help ease the cost burdens facing battery manufacturers and automakers…President Joe Biden had earlier this year invoked the Defense Production Act (DPA) to step up US production of minerals for electric vehicle and storage batteries and lower the nation’s reliance on foreign supply…Separately, the US Department of Energy (DOE) dedicated $3.16 billion of funding as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to develop the country’s battery supply chain…“At the heart of it, the intent is to localise the critical minerals supply chain and components that go into making lithium-ion batteries and electric vehicles generating local value addition, to create jobs and eventually to gain pace in the goal of working towards climate change mitigation efforts.”…“Considering it takes seven years to build a mine and refining plant but only 24 months to build a battery plant, the best part of this decade is needed to establish an entirely new industry in the United States,” said Simon Moores, chief executive of Benchmark…“If the US wants the incentive to really work, it needs to extend this by 4 years to 2028 so the battery supply chain builds into the incentive,” he added…China is currently the largest refiner of battery minerals such as lithium, cobalt and graphite – a dominance that is not likely to end this decade, Benchmark forecasts.

The Seattle Times - August 4, 2022
Ford, General Motors, Toyota and other automakers are making a last-minute lobbying push to change Democrats’ new spending bill over ...

Ford, General Motors, Toyota and other automakers are making a last-minute lobbying push to change Democrats’ new spending bill over concern that they stand to lose out due to strict new limits on electric-vehicle credits…An extension of the popular $7,500 tax credit available to EV buyers was included in the surprise breakthrough deal reached by Sen. Joe Manchin and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer last week. Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat, has long been a skeptic of the credit, dismissing it as “ludicrous” and arguing that it subsidizes production of Chinese-made batteries…“Unfortunately, after they are implemented, at this point it looks like companies won’t be able to use them in the short run,” said Sen. Debbie Stabenow, a Michigan Democrat who has been instrumental in the negotiations over the credits…So far, automakers aren’t making much headway, with senators unwilling to consider any substantial changes that would upset support for the bill, according to people familiar with the talks who asked not to be identified…Among the restrictions of most concern: requirements that would render EVs made with any battery components manufactured by China and other “foreign entities of concern” ineligible to receive the credit after 2023. And beginning in 2025, that prohibition extends to the use of any critical mineral in a battery that is extracted or processed by those countries…That could pose a big hurdle to automakers who have a connection to the Chinese supply chain. The processing of critical minerals typically used in EV batteries, such as lithium, nickel, cobalt, and manganese, is done almost exclusively in China, Morgan Bazilian, director of the Payne Institute at the Colorado School of Mines, said in an interview…Ford, General Motors, Toyota and Stellantis are lobbying for more time to comply with those content requirements, according to people familiar with the matter. The companies are making their case to lawmakers, including Manchin, Schumer and Stabenow, to extend the start of those requirements by multiple years, the people said…Other automakers, such as Amazon-backed electric car maker Rivian, are lobbying to extend the transition time before new limits on vehicle price and income for buyers take effect. The Senate spending deal would cap the credit to an income level of $150,000 for a single-filing taxpayer and $300,000 for joint filers for new vehicles. It also includes a cap on the suggested retail price of eligible vehicles of $55,000 for new cars and $80,000 for pickups and SUVs…That effectively excludes many Rivian models, which cross that price point as options to the vehicles are added, James Chen, vice president of public policy for Rivian, said in an interview. The company has sold roughly 7,000 vehicles, far from the existing 200,000 vehicle cap, but the new limits would take effect starting in 2023.

EVs & Energy Storage
InsideEVs - August 4, 2022
The RWD ID.4 Standard with a 62-kWh battery starts at $37,495, making it $3,735 more affordable than the current entry-level ID.4 Pro.

Volkswagen of America has announced US pricing for the 2023 ID.4 electric SUV, which recently entered production at its plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee…The 2023 VW ID.4 Standard, which is the name of the new entry-level model, has a starting MSRP of $37,495, excluding a $1,295 destination charge. That makes it $3,735 cheaper than the current entry-level model, the 2022 ID.4 Pro, which starts at $41,230. Customers eligible for the federal tax credit of up to $7,500 can lower the price to a very competitive $29,995 before the destination fee…As previously announced, the US-built ID.4 comes with a new 62-kWh battery pack for the 201-horsepower, rear-wheel-drive ID.4 Standard, which enables a manufacturer-estimated range of 208 miles (335 kilometers).

For further information about the NICO Project and its Mineral Reserves, please refer to the Technical Report on the Feasibility Study for NICO, entitled "Technical Report on the Feasibility Study for the NICO-Gold-Cobalt-Bismuth-Copper Project, Northwest Territories, Canada", dated April 2, 2014 and prepared by Micon, which has been filed on SEDAR and is available under the Company's profile at


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