WWR stock rose in pre-market trading on October 5, 2020. The stock has been rising since last week and President Trump’s Executive Order on critical minerals.
Westwater Resources, Inc. (“Westwater”) (NASDAQ: WWR), an energy materials development company, applauds the President’s Executive Order (“Order”) signed on September 30, 2020, that addresses the threat to the U.S. domestic supply chain from reliance on critical minerals from foreign adversaries. The critical minerals referred to in the Order were previously identified by the Department of the Interior in May 2018, and include both natural graphite and vanadium.
The President’s declaration that the United States’ heavy reliance on foreign nations for critical minerals is a national emergency highlights the importance of Westwater’s plans to develop the Coosa Graphite Deposit in east-central Alabama. Westwater’s business plan for the Coosa Graphite Project over the next two and a half years is to develop a U.S. domestic supply for natural graphite for use in all types of batteries in the United States. During recent exploration activities along the Roscoe Ridge at the mine site, Westwater has also discovered widespread and significant levels of vanadium mineralization.
The U.S. is 100% dependent on imports for graphite, which is the primary anode material in lithium-ion batteries that power smartphones, laptops, and electric vehicles, and stores power from intermittent renewable energy sources. Graphite was specifically named as one of the critical minerals in which the U.S. is heavily dependent on China for its supply. Also, vanadium is an essential component in the manufacture of high-strength steel, is used as a catalyst in chemical manufacturing, and is also used as a component in the manufacturing of some ceramic, glass, and pigment products. The U.S. imports virtually all of its industrial vanadium requirements from mines located in South Africa, China, and Russia.
Christopher M. Jones, President and Chief Executive Officer of Westwater, said, “The President’s Executive Order opens up new avenues for financing and permitting our Coosa Graphite Project – this is good news for Westwater Resources and the United States.”
In the Order the President says, “a strong America cannot be dependent on imports from foreign adversaries for the critical minerals that are increasingly necessary to maintain our economic and military strength in the 21st century.” The President said the heavy dependence on imports for critical minerals makes the U.S. vulnerable to adverse foreign government action, natural disaster, or other supply disruptions.
“I therefore determine that our nation’s undue reliance on critical minerals, in processed or unprocessed form, from foreign adversaries constitutes an unusual and extraordinary threat, which has its source in substantial part outside the United States, to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States. I hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat,” Trump penned in the Executive Order.
Further details on Trump’s critical mineral Executive Order can be read at https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/executive-order-addressing-threat-domestic-supply-chain-reliance-critical-minerals-foreign-adversaries.
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