ASM signs three-way MOU with VTRE and Blackstone

Signing of agreement between ASM, BSX, and VTRE at Australian Embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam. Back row: Hoa Nguyen (Austrade), Chris Morley (Austrade), Andrew Goledzinowski (Australian Ambassador to Vietnam), Ben Davies (Australian Embassy, Vietnam). Front row: Scott Williamson (MD BSX), Luu Anh Tuan (Chairman VTRE), Rowena Smith (MD ASM)

We are pleased to advise that ASM has signed a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with ASX-listed nickel producer Blackstone Minerals Limited (ASX: BSX) (Blackstone), and rare earth element (REE) refiners, Vietnam Rare Earth Company (VTRE).

The MOU was signed at a formal ceremony at the Australian Embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam.

ASM Managing Director & CEO Rowena Smith said:

This MOU has the potential to drive a more collaborative approach within the rare earth elements and critical minerals sector and deliver positive outcomes for all parties involved.

We have already established a strong relationship with the VTRE team and I am excited by the progress they are making to increase their oxide production capacity. The partnership they are looking to build with Blackstone has the potential to benefit ASM’s existing supply of rare earth oxides for processing at the KMP.

Quarterly Activities Report to 30 June 2023

We are pleased to advise our Quarterly Activities Report to 30 June 2023 has been released.

In line with ASM’s strategic business priorities, this Quarter the Company:

  • Commenced a strategic partnership with US-based rare earth magnet manufacturer Noveon Magnetics Inc., with the sale of an initial 100 tonnes of NdFeB alloy from ASM’s Korean Metals Plant (KMP);
  • Secured the supply of rare earth oxides with a binding agreement with Vietnam Rare Earth Company, to ensure the continued ramp-up of production at the KMP;
  • Progressed its diversified funding strategy for the Dubbo Project via the award of a $6.5 million grant under Tranche 2 of the Australian Government’s Critical Minerals Development Program; and
  • Demonstrated an ongoing commitment to safety and quality in our operations, having been awarded ISO 45001 (OHS Management System) accreditation and recognised as an industry leader by the Daejeon Regional Office of the Ministry of Employment and Labor for the risk assessment practices implemented at the KMP.

Risk assessment recognition for KMP

The Risk Assessment Excellence Case Competition was organised by the Cheongju Regional Office of the Ministry of Employment and Labor

ASM’s Korean Metals Plant (KMP) has been recognised as one of the top five outstanding organisations in the Chungcheonbuk province for its risk assessment and safety management practices.

The ‘Risk Assessment Excellence Case Competition’ – organised by the Cheongju Regional Office of the Ministry of Employment and Labor – received entries from more than 200 companies and aims to promote the widespread adoption of best practice risk assessment across all industries.

Officially opened in May 2022, the KMP is ASM’s flagship metals production facility and is continuing its ramp up, aligned to customer demand. The facility is currently producing neodymium praseodymium (NdPr) metal and neodymium iron boron (NdFeB) alloy for established customers in Korea and the US.

ASM’s Rowena Smith, commented:

This award is deserved recognition of the hard work and commitment of the entire ASM team but particularly those in our Health, Safety & Environment function.

The safety, health and wellbeing of our people will remain our highest priorities as we continue to ramp up production at the KMP.”