Russia continues negotiations on the development of lithium deposits in Bolivia, they are at the final stage, even despite the Chinese conglomerate’s earlier win in the tender, Russia’s ambassador in La Paz, Mikhail Ledenev, said in an interview with RIA Novosti.
“Rosatom’s subsidiary Uranium One Group is actively involved in the development of the lithium industry in Bolivia, negotiations are underway on this subject, which are at the final stage,” the diplomat said.
The victory of the Chinese company in the tender does not mean that Russia has dropped out, he noted.
Why it matters
Bolivia boasts the world’s largest proven lithium reserves, located mainly in the salt flats of Uyuni, Coipasa and Pastos Grandes in the southwestern highlands. The reserves of the Uyuni alone are estimated at over 21 million tonnes.
In January, Bolivia signed a contract for the development of lithium deposits with Chinese consortium CBC. However, after the tender, in which Russian Rosatom also took part, Bolivian state-run lithium company Yacimientos de Litio de Bolivia said it could choose more than one company. The Bolivian President Luis Arce, after signing an agreement with the Chinese side, said that contract negotiations are ongoing with other companies.