Under the terms of the deal, Piedmont Lithium will supply Tesla with approximately 1/3 of its planned 160,000 tonne per annum spudomene concentrate from its mine in North Carolina.
The deal is initially for five years, but has an option to extend for another five years by mutual agreement. Tesla also has options to buy more lithium if needed.
In a statement following the announcement, Piedmont said the deal is an important milestone as it marks the first U.S. based lithium supply chain.
“The agreement highlights the strategic importance of Piedmont’s unique American spodumene deposit and confirms the trend towards spodumene as the preferred feedstock for the lithium hydroxide required in high-nickel batteries,” said Piedmont president and CEO Keith Phillips.
While the deal has now been signed, the first delivery of the product from North Carolina isn’t expected until sometime between July 2022 and July 2023.