According to the Financial Times, the deal “highlights how car groups are making direct mining investments”.
The Santa Rita mine produces nickel sulphide, while the Serrote mine produces copper and gold.
ACG’s US $1.1bn transaction is also being supported by Swiss miner Glencore and investment fund La Mancha.
Through its subsidiary PowerCo, VW is investing $100m in the deal “as a prepayment for future nickel supplied by the mines”, the Financial Times said.
Stellantis has invested $100m directly into ACG.
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With China’s dominance of the critical minerals used for EV battery production increasingly generating concern amongst western governments, automakers are beginning to place greater emphasis in sourcing battery metals.
“The global supply chain is breaking up and segregating into the eastern supply chain and the western supply chain,” ACG chief executive Artem Volynets was quoted as saying.
“And we are very much on the forefront of that, supplying into the western supply chain.”