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Chile lithium miner SQM reaches supply deal with Hyundai, Kia

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SANTIAGO (Reuters) -Chilean lithium miner SQM said on Monday that it had reached a long-term supply deal with Hyundai and Kia to provide the carmakers with the white metal, key for the production of electric vehicle batteries.

Hyundai and Kia will “secure a portion of (their) future lithium hydroxide supply from SQM,” the miner said in a statement.

SQM did not give financial details into the deal with the Korean automakers, but said there was “strong motivation to continue with (its) lithium hydroxide expansion plan.”

The miner’s current Chilean capacity for lithium hydroxide, made from lithium carbonate, is at 40,000 metric tons per year, according to its first-quarter results.

SQM is on track to boost output in Chile to 100,000 tons in 2025. It is also building up capacity in China and Australia.

(Reporting by Fabian Cambero; Editing by Sarah Morland)

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