GAM, which holds non-lithium mineral rights in the Greenbushes region and receives tantalum from the extraction process, argued that Talison’s lithium production plans could come at the expense of its mineral access in the area.

Though the full terms of the settlement between the two companies is confidential, Talison has confirmed that part of the agreement includes the delivery of a new tantalum recovery circuit to GAM. GAM stated that agreement would allow the company to significantly expand its tantalum concentrate processing.

The planned expansion of the Greenbushes mine to 1.34 million tonnes of concentrate can now go on. The Greenbushes expansion is expected to cost around $520 million and will add an estimated 520,000 tonnes a year of capacity to the project’s annual lithium concentrate production.