How Zimbabwe Can Leverage a Highly Sough-after Mineral Resource to Boost Economic Growth?

Boasting of the sixth largest lithium reserves globally and representing one of Africa’s biggest producers of the commodity, Zimbabwe is poised to play a crucial role in advancing the global energy transition through the supply of lithium and related products.

The country’s Bikita Mine is home to approximately 11 million tons of lithium resources.

Currently, the country is estimated to have the highest number of lithium projects under exploration in Africa, with the development of projects such as the Arcadia Mine – estimated to hold upwards of 26 million tons; the Zulu Lithium Mine; and others set to position the country as a global producer.

As the global economy shifts to net-zero solutions, the demand for lithium – among other minerals necessary for the production of many clean energy technologies – has begun to dramatically increase, and if the full potential of Zimbabwe’s lithium resources is unlocked, the country will meet upwards of 20% of global demand.
Zimbabwe is Africa's largest lithium producer
While Zimbabwe’s upstream mineral sector is a buzz of exploration, the country has long-relied on international refineries to process and distribute its lithium resources. This year, the Government has shifted its focus towards the downstream sector in a bid to drive infrastructure development, employment creation and investments across the domestic market. Recently, the Government imposed a ban on the export of raw lithium in a bid to boost the domestic value chain and strengthen value addition in the minerals sector. As such, the country is well positioned to become both a global producer and regional processing hub, with a strong pipeline of investment opportunities cropping up across the country.

A lithium mining plant
Already, investment is flowing into the country, a testament to the country’s potential of becoming a lithium hub, and with China – the world’s largest importer of lithium – having significant interests in the Zimbabwean market, the role the southern African country plays as a major player in the global lithium market continues to grow.

Source: energycapitalpower.com