Lake Resources (ASX: LKE) has cemented its position in the Argentina’s lithium triangle after the Jujuy Provincial Government finally approved the company’s application for 45,000 hectares in prospective lithium brine leases adjoining Orocobre, SQM and Lithium Americas’ tenements.
After a two-year delay due to administration issues, Jujuy regulatory authorities finally confirmed Lake Resources’ ownership of the tenements, enabling the company to advance its exploration efforts across the landholding.
According to Lake Resources, its subsidiaries had applied for the assets prior to the region’s lithium rush. But there had been a prolonged delay, which today’s agreement has now resolved.
“The applications were made well before lithium assets commanded high valuations in Argentina,” Lake Resources managing director Steve Promnitz said.
“The leases are in the same basin as Orocobre, SQM and Lithium Americas, Advantage Lithium and LSC Lithium, which have proven and, indeed, excellent lithium grades and are either in production or heading that way rapidly,” Mr Promnitz added.
The new leases in Olaroz are adjacent to Orocobre’s Olaroz operations and extend 30km. The other tenements are in Cauchari and adjoin the SQM and Lithium Americas’ lithium brine joint venture, as well as the Advantage Lithium and Orocobre project.
“This is one of the largest land holdings in one of the prime lithium brine basins of the world and it confirms Lake Resources’ substantial scale versus its peers,” Mr Promnitz said.
Lake Resource is already fast-tracking exploration in the region after reporting last week it had transported a larger rotary rig to its existing 100%-owned Kachi lithium brine project in Argentina’s Catamarca Province.
A maiden drilling program at the project was started in mid-November last year with assay results from the campaign still pending.
The company claims an explorer had returned 250 milligrams per litre of lithium from exploration at its nearby leases.
Argentina makes up part of South America’s lithium triangle where explorers from around the world have pegged up land.
Lithium brine operations are less costly and faster to develop than hard rock lithium deposits, giving lithium brine producers an advantage.
With its foothold in the region now firm, Lake Resources’ finished the day unchanged at A$0.16, after an early morning run on the back of the news.