Northern Graphite Corporation is an Ottawa-based Canadian mine development company that trades on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol “NGC” and on the OTCQX under the symbol “NGPHF”.
Northern’s principal asset is the Bissett Creek graphite project located 100km east of North Bay, Ontario and close to major roads and infrastructure. The Company has completed an NI 43-101 bankable final Feasibility Study and received its major environmental permit. Additional operational permits and species-at-risk permitting are required to commence operations and are expected to be received in 2017. Northern anticipates that it will be in a position to begin construction of the mine in early 2018, subject to the availability of financing.
The Company believes that Bissett Creek has the best location/infrastructure, lowest capital cost, highest margin and highest percentage of large flake production and battery grade production of any new graphite project.
Graphite prices tripled from 2005 to 2012 due to the ongoing industrialization of China, India and other emerging economies and resultant strong demand from traditional steel and automotive markets. Due to a subsequent slowdown in world economies they have fallen back by more than 50%. However, new applications such as lithium-ion batteries, fuel cells and nuclear power have the potential to create significant, incremental demand growth in the future. For example, there is 10-12 times more graphite than lithium in lithium-ion batteries, and it takes 30-40 times as much graphite to manufacture these batteries due to losses during processing. The use of li-ion batteries is growing at over 20% per year and this trend will continue with the increased use of hybrid and all electric vehicles.
China produces over 70% of the world’s graphite and is seeing production and export growth levelling off, costs increasing and quality declining. China prefers to sell the rest of the world batteries or EVs rather than raw materials and announced that it is building a graphite stockpile equal to 80% of annual production by 2020. This creates serious security of supply concerns for the west. The European Union and the USA have both named graphite a supply critical mineral.
With continued growth in consumer electronics, electric vehicles, and grid storage, the world needs new, secure western sources of graphite supply. The Company is well positioned to benefit.