CENTENNIAL, Colo.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Westwater Resources, Inc. (Nasdaq: WWR), an energy metals exploration and development company, commented on the recently completed Section 232 Investigation of Uranium Imports. President Trump now has up to 90 days from April 14 to decide whether to act on the matter, which can include quotas or tariffs, a timeline which concludes in mid-July.
The U.S. Department of Commerce initiated a Section 232 investigation in July 2018 to determine whether the present quantity of uranium ore and product imports threaten to impair U.S. national security. U.S. uranium production has declined significantly since 1987, with domestic uranium producers experiencing a major slowdown in operations and employment.
Christopher M. Jones, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented, “We believe that, regardless of the decision that will be made by the President, U.S. producers will benefit in the near term. The U.S. utility companies are expected to come back to the market and stock-up on fuel supplies even if the President decides to deny the petition. In the event that the decision is in favor of the Section 232 action, U.S. producers will see greater demand for domestically produced uranium. Either way, we expect the price of uranium produced in the United States to rise.
“The U.S. relies heavily on nuclear power for carbon free base load power. According to UxC, more than 20% of all uranium produced in the world is consumed in the U.S. Nuclear power represents the only electrical base load solution for global electric power growth driven by economic expansion and a focus on carbon reduction.
“Uranium remains a key strategic focus for Westwater. Westwater Resources controls extensive mineral holdings in New Mexico and Texas. In addition, WWR owns the Rosita and Kingsville Dome processing facilities in Texas, both of which are licensed for production,” concluded Mr. Jones.
About Westwater Resources
WWR is focused on developing energy-related materials. The Company’s battery-materials projects include the Coosa Graphite Project — the most advanced natural flake graphite project in the contiguous United States — and the associated Coosa Graphite Mine located across 41,900 acres (~17,000 hectares) in east-central Alabama. In addition, the Company maintains lithium mineral properties in three prospective lithium brine basins in Nevada and Utah. Westwater’s uranium projects are located in Texas and New Mexico. In Texas, the Company has two licensed and currently idled uranium processing facilities and approximately 11,000 acres (~4,400 hectares) of prospective in-situ recovery uranium projects. In New Mexico, the Company controls mineral rights encompassing approximately 188,700 acres (~76,000 hectares) in the prolific Grants Mineral Belt, which is one of the largest concentrations of sandstone-hosted uranium deposits in the world. Incorporated in 1977 as Uranium Resources, Inc., Westwater also owns an extensive uranium information database of historic drill hole logs, assay certificates, maps and technical reports for the western United States. For more information, visit www.westwaterresources.net.
This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions and are identified by words such as “expects,” “estimates,” “projects,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “could,” and other similar words. All statements addressing events or developments that WWR expects or anticipates will occur in the future, including but not limited to statements relating to the future price of and demand for uranium, and the President’s actions in response to the Section 232 investigation, are forward-looking statements. Because they are forward-looking, they should be evaluated in light of important risk factors and uncertainties. These risk factors and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, (a) the Company’s ability to successfully integrate Alabama Graphite Corporation’s business into its own, and the risk that additional analysis of the Coosa Graphite Project may result in revisions to the findings of WWR’s initial optimization study; (b) the Company’s ability to raise additional capital in the future; (c) spot price and long-term contract price of graphite, lithium, vanadium and uranium; (d) risks associated with our domestic operations; (e) operating conditions at the Company’s projects; (f) government and tribal regulation of the graphite industry, the lithium industry, the vanadium industry, the uranium industry, and the power industry; (g) world-wide graphite, lithium, vanadium and uranium supply and demand, including the supply and demand for lithium-based batteries; (h) maintaining sufficient financial assurance in the form of sufficiently collateralized surety instruments; (i) unanticipated geological, processing, regulatory and legal or other problems the Company may encounter in the jurisdictions where the Company operates or intends to operate, including in Alabama, Texas, New Mexico, Utah, and Nevada; (j) the ability of the Company to enter into and successfully close acquisitions or other material transactions; (k) the results of the Company’s lithium brine exploration activities at the Columbus Basin, Railroad Valley, and Sal Rica projects, and the possibility that future exploration results may be materially less promising than initial exploration result; (l) any graphite, lithium, vanadium or uranium discoveries not being in high-enough concentration to make it economic to extract the metals; (m) currently pending or new litigation or arbitration; and (n) other factors which are more fully described in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize or should any of the Company’s underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those currently anticipated. In addition, undue reliance should not be placed on the Company’s forward-looking statements. Except as required by law, the Company disclaims any obligation to update or publicly announce any revisions to any of the forward-looking statements contained in this news release. The results of the initial optimization study are preliminary in nature and subject to revision following WWR’s further analysis of the Coosa Graphite Project.