JX Nippon Mining & Metals and its member Taniobis have entered into a strategic partnership with Advanced Metallurgical Group (AMG) Brasil for tantalum production.

This is the initial step in JX Nippon’s efforts to expand into mineral resources business with rare metals.

As part of the new plans, JX Nippon will work together with AMG Brasil for the production of tantalum raw materials from ores extracted at AMG-operated Mibra mine in Minas Gerais, Brazil.

This work will be executed by a JX Nippon-AMG Brasil joint venture (JV) from January next year. 

The tantalum pre-concentrate will be processed at Brazil’s mine site and the subsequent concentrate will be purchased by Taniobis on priority grounds. This purchase will account for 20% of the overall procurement made by Taniobis.

Taniobis vice chairman Kazuyuki Marukawa said: “Through our strong partnership among AMG Brasil, JX Nippon and Taniobis, we can fulfil our mission to enhance the stable supply of tantalum to the market.

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“At the same time, we believe we can develop our overall tantalum relevant market with the steady growth in order to serve for the better world.”

JX Nippon claimed that this will further maintain stable procurement of raw materials to facilitate the advanced materials production, supporting its ‘Long-Term Vision 2040’ strategy.

The advanced materials can further be used for manufacturing semiconductors and capacitors as well as for addressing the rise in demand for mobile devices and telecommunications infrastructure.

Apart from stable procurement, the entire effort will simultaneously boost JX Nippon’s contribution to ensure ‘sustainable and responsible’ procurement.

In 2020, JX Nippon finalised an agreement to purchase stakes in Caserones copper mine owned by Mitsui & Co and Mitsui Mining and Smelting.