Rio Tinto wants to discuss the Jadar lithium project again

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MELBOURNE – Rio Tinto wants to restart talks with the Serbian government on its $ 2.4 billion Jadar lithium project, CEO and president Simon Thomson said today, Reuters reported.

The Serbian government revoked the licenses for the Jadar project in January, after mass protests caused by environmental concerns over the planned mine.

“We very much hope that we will be able to discuss all options with the Serbian government now that the election is not standing in the way,” Thomson told shareholders at the company’s annual meeting in Australia, in Rio Tinto’s first public comments since the election.

The Jadar project, which could meet 90 percent of Europe’s current lithium needs, was “very important for Serbia” because it could boost the country’s economic development and open up business development opportunities to supply green technology to the European car market, Thomson said.

CEO Jakob Stausholm said that Rio Tinto did not give up on Jadra, because it is a perfect project.

According to him, the project has “flawless” environmental, social and management credentials.

“We certainly understand the concerns of the local community, but we believe that in fact those concerns have been largely resolved by the environmental impact assessments we have made,” Thomson said, reports Tanjug.