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Electric Vehicle Market Grows With Sustained Government Support

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Electric Vehicle Market Grows With Sustained Government Support

FinancialBuzz.com News Commentary

PR Newswire

NEW YORK, August 8, 2018 /PRNewswire/ --

According to data provided by MarketsandMarkets, the global lithium compounds market is projected to reach USD 5.87 Billion by 2020 while increasing at a CAGR of 13.22% between 2015 and 2020. The report specifies that lithium-ion batteries are the largest application for lithium compounds, in terms of value and volume. The demand for lithium-ion batteries is growing around the world for new generation energy electronic devices like cameras, high-performance portable computing devices, and electric vehicles (EVs). MGX Minerals Inc. (OTC:MGXMF), Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA), Honda Motor Co. Ltd. (NYSE:HMC), FMC Corporation (NASDAQ:FMC), General Motors (NYSE:GM)

The EVs industry itself is a young and innovative technology-based initiative with strong growth projections. MarketsandMarkets research on EVs explains that the major factors behind the growth of electric vehicle sales are government support, which comes in the form of grants, subsidies and tax rebates, additional factors include growing environmental consumer awareness, improvements to charging infrastructure, and increasing vehicle range. Furthermore, global electric vehicle sales are projected to grow at a CAGR of 32.57% from 1.50 Million units in 2018 to 10.79 Million units by 2025.

MGX Minerals Inc. (OTCQB:MGXMF) is also listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the ticker (CSE:XMG). Today the company announced breaking news that, "it has entered into an Memorandum of Understanding (the "MOU") to acquire 50% of the issued shares of Chilean Lithium Salars SpA ("CLS"). CLS is a wholly owned subsidiary of Chilean Lithium Salars Pty Ltd. ("CLSH") and holds a 100% interest in three prospective lithium exploration Projects (the "Projects") located in Chile, including Francisco Basin, Laguna Brava and Laguna Escondida Lithium Projects totaling 12,900 hectares.

Francisco Basin Lithium Project: The Francisco Basin lithium project ("Francisco Basin") is located 30km south of Maricunga salar, 100 km southeast of the regional center of Copiapo and accessible via a regional highway and established tracks. The lease area comprises 11,000 hectares with drilling expected to commence shortly. Historical exploration work on the project was previously limited to hydrology studies.  In January 2018, CLSH completed a reconnaissance brine sampling at the project. This sampling confirmed the presence of lithium enrichment in the surface brines.  The samples were assayed at the University of Antofagasta ("Antofagasta"), Antofagasta, Chile which has one of the two leading laboratories in the world for this type of brine analysis. In May 2018, sampling continued and a 2.5L sample was taken near the southern shore of the surface Northern lagoon and sent to Servicios Quimicos Ltda. ("SERQUIM"), Antofagasta, Chile for content analysis.

A geophysical program comprising an electromagnetic survey was completed in April 2018. The survey was based on a grid of sections which indicated the presence of high conductivity brines in two zones with significant thickness and horizontal coverage. The presence of anomalous lithium levels in the water body area located in the Northern lagoon, which is potentially underlain by a fault bound, saturated basin of undetermined thickness and the presence of widespread felsic to intermediate volcanic rocks as a lithium source.

The Francisco Basin salar is within a large, fault-bound, alluvium-filled basin to the immediate south of the Copiapo Volcano. The basin is closed, drains a large area and the salar appears to be the lowest point within the drainage.

The rocks in the drainage surrounding this salar are dominantly volcanic, ranging in age from Eocene to Miocene, juxtaposed with some older rocks. To the west is a Cretaceous sedimentary sequence separated from the volcanic rocks of the Francisco Basin area by the Cerro Guerrita Fault. To the east, an older Oligocene to Miocene volcanic sequence is overlain by the Copiapo volcanic rocks.

The Francisco Basin alluvial basin sits at the junction of three catchments. These river systems presumably provide the fill for the basin and are in part, along with the limits of the salar, structurally controlled. The alluvial fill may be covering post-Copiapo aged faulting.

Laguna Brava Project: The Laguna Brava salar ("Laguna") is geologically prospective for lithium brine. The catchment is large and dominated by volcanic rocks, many of which have been altered by hydrothermal fluids associated with volcanism. The lake is also fed by active hot springs. Historical sampling of surface brines indicated significant lithium enrichment. In December 2017, CLSH undertook a four-hole reconnaissance drilling program at a southern access point of the salar to investigate the deeper aquifer. Prior to the CLSH reconnaissance drilling program in December 2017, no previous work had been undertaken to assess the volume and grade of the subsurface resource. Previous work recommended that the subsurface brines be investigated on the basis of his conclusion that Laguna Brava is geothermally fed. The presence of hot springs being present either at the margins or beneath salars is common within the Chilean Altiplano, other notable locations include the Salar de Coposa in Region I and Salar de Atacama in Region II. The principal origin of lithium in the Salar de Atacama is interpreted to be the lithium-bearing geothermal waters from the El Tatio Geyser Field, located north of the salar. The geothermal fluids enter the northern part of the Salar de Atacama via surface and subsurface flow. It has also been reported that the chemistry of the salar brines is almost identical to the chemistry of the geothermal fluids of El Tatio.

Furthermore, work by Risacher et al., (2003) has shown that subsurface brines contained within the volcanic geology are of a much higher concentration, typically 250,000-350,000 mg/L TDS. Given this hypothesis, CLSH commissioned a reconnaissance drilling program in December 2017 comprising four bores; the locations are shown in Figure 6-4. Two bores reached the design depth of 120 m, and the other two bores were abandoned due to collar collapse because of high water flows. The results from this program confirmed the presence of lithium at depth."

Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA) has broken new barriers in developing high-performance automobiles that are not only the world's best and highest-selling pure electric vehicles-with long range and absolutely no tailpipe emissions-but also the safest, highest-rated cars on the road in the world. The Company reported its second quarter financial results for fiscal year 2018. Second quarter highlights include: Q2 Automotive gross margin increased to 20.6% GAAP and 21.0% non-GAAP; Model 3 gross margin turned slightly positive in Q2, expecting roughly 15% in Q3; Expecting to produce 50-55k Model 3s in Q3; deliveries should exceed that; Major cost restructuring executed in Q2 USD 2.2 Billion of cash and cash equivalents at Q2-end, expected to grow in Q3 and Q4; Capex projection in 2018 adjusted to <USD 2.5 Billion. Tesla aims to increase production to 10,000 Model 3s per week as fast as it can. The Company believes that the majority of its production lines will be ready to produce at this rate by end of this year, but it will still have to increase capacity in certain places and the Company will need its suppliers to meet this as well. As a result, Tesla expects to hit this rate sometime next year. The Tesla Gigafactory was born out of necessity and will supply enough batteries to support Tesla's projected vehicle demand of 500,000 cars per year by 2018, which will require today's entire worldwide supply of lithium-ion batteries.

Honda Motor Co. Ltd. (NYSE:HMC) is the mobility company known for their performance and innovative technology. Honda recently paired up with Jackery, the Outdoor Industry leader in eco-friendly portable power solutions, to launch a new line of sustainable energy products at Outdoor Retailer's Summer Market. The Honda brand is long known for its commitment to a sustainable future, making the collaborative line of portable power solutions a perfect addition to Honda's upcoming launch of the 2019 Insight Hybrid. Demand for portable power outdoors continues to increase as technology continues to improve step for step with the desire to spend more time outside while remaining connected through personal electronics. Used for both recreational portable power as well as emergency backup power, the Honda by Jackery product portfolio meets the portable power needs of outdoorists in a variety of environments, including camping, climbing, hiking, and tailgating. The Honda by Jackery products are competitively priced and align with Jackery's mission of developing energy solutions that power life experiences. The licensed product portfolio of these trusted brands features a series of portable power stations designed with the outdoor enthusiast in mind. The solar power ready, light-weight portable power stations feature lithium battery technology that allows adventurers to enjoy an endless supply of power for extended time outdoors.

FMC Corporation (NASDAQ:FMC) has served the global agricultural, industrial and consumer markets with innovative solutions, applications and quality products for over a century. The Company announced that it will rebrand its lithium materials business as Livent Corporation following the previously announced plan to separate FMC Lithium into a publicly traded company. Livent Corporation is one of only a small number of companies with the capability, reputation, and know-how to produce high-performance lithium compounds that are helping meet the growing demand for lithium. Livent has universal appeal, appropriate for a premier, pure-play lithium material sciences company with an expansive global footprint and worldwide business opportunities. The new Livent™ brand, including the brand mark and visual identity, will be revealed closer to the separation date. "Today's announcement marks another major step in our progress to create two stand-alone leading public companies," said Pierre Brondeau, FMC Corporation CEO and Chairman.  "As an independent company, Livent will have the freedom and ability to chart its own course and business strategy. Its leadership and employees will have the flexibility to experiment, thrive and pursue its growth plans with a great new brand.  And we are equally excited about FMC's future as one of the largest agricultural technology companies focused on bringing advanced innovation and sustainable solutions to farmers around the world."

General Motors (NYSE:GM) is committed to delivering safer, better and more sustainable ways for people to get around. General Motors announced last year the Buick LaCrosse expanded its technological credentials by adding eAssist light electrification for the 2018 model. The combination of an electric motor with Buick's latest 2.5L four-cylinder engine delivers quiet, refined and spirited efficient performance backed by the value and customer experience expected of Buick. This new eAssist system, when coupled with the four-cylinder engine, has a 19% increase in city fuel economy compared to the LaCrosse's advanced V-6 and leverages a compact lithium-ion battery pack to provide select benefits found in fully electric vehicles, such as torque-assisted launch, energy-saving regenerative braking and exceptionally smooth stop/start. It will be the standard powertrain for the 2018 LaCrosse, which goes on sale this fall. "Executing innovative technologies in an approachable and meaningful way is core to Buick," said Duncan Aldred, Vice President, Global Buick and GMC. "By adding the eAssist system to the LaCrosse, our technology flagship, we are making electrification accessible to our customers as we chart our course to the future of mobility."

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