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The Australian miner Orocubre Limited is already the largest miner of lithium in Argentina. Bolivia, Chile and Argentina contain about 80 per cent of all the world’s metal. mobile aggregate crushing plant

Lithium batteries are currently used in cell phones, but electric cars require an enormous number of batteries and current production is barely enough to meet demand.

There are, however, concerns by environmentalists that the switch from fossil fuels to lithium batteries simply replaces one non-renewable resource with another. A Toyota Motor Corp. affiliate will partner with Orocobre Ltd., an Australian mineral-exploration company, to develop a mine in Argentina that will provide raw materials for vehicles powered by lithium-ion batteries.

Soaring precious metals prices have been driven by what has been the dominant investment theme of the past month – persistent weakness in the U.S. dollar. With signs of inflation creeping up everywhere, most notably in the broad-based commodity rally, an increasing number of central banks have moved to tighten monetary policy. However, despite a few comments from regional Fed Presidents, the U.S. Federal Reserve has shown no inclination to alter its crisis-level monetary policy. Zero nominal interest rates combined with a massive expansion of the Fed’s balance sheet to over .6 trillion have provided a tailwind for the gold price. quartz fine grinding mill

With Fed Chairman Bernanke largely silent over the course of the past month, investors are betting that he is not ready to normalize monetary policy. Thus, dollars are sold, or shorted, and the proceeds invested in higher-yielding, or riskier, assets such as commodities, stocks, and foreign currencies. Precious metals such as gold and silver have benefitted from their store of value qualities. They cannot be hypothecated via a printing press like hundred dollar bills.

Value of the transactions leapt to billion last year, mainly in iron ore, from billion in 2009, PwC said in a study released at an event in Sao Paulo.

While the increase is significant, the total value of transactions in 2010 was modest compared to the peaks in M&A activity in the sector of 4.7 billion in 2007 and .4 billion in 2006, during the commodities boom before the before the economic crisis hit, PwC said.

In South America, M&A transactions in iron ore and steel were worth .8 billion last year, of which Brazil had the lion’s share at .8 billion, the consultancy firm said. crusher for rock salt

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