The silvery-white element is set to put Thailand on the global stage as one of the key sources of lithium mines, as it has discovered nearly 15 million tonnes of lithium deposits. The latest discovery has positioned Thailand as the third-largest lithium resource in the world. However, it is unclear about the amount to be commercially exploited.
Meanwhile, Thailand aims to start producing lithium mines in its southwest in about two years. Government deputy spokeswoman Rudklao Intawong Suwankiri said, “We are trying to find out how much we can use from the resources we found. It will take time.”
According to government officials and companies involved in lithium production, it will boost Thailand’s ambition to become a regional electric vehicle production hub. Along with lithium mines, it will develop an EV production industry, which will include $1.44 billion in investment commitments from Chinese carmakers.
The 14.8 million tonnes of lithium are distributed between two separate sites in the southern province of Phang Nga. Miner Pan Asia Metals is gearing up to file mining permits in March. It will be filed for the Phang-Nga, which includes the prospective Reung Kiet and Bang I Tum sites.