Canadian manufacturing
Government Funding | Success Stories

Canadian Governments Invest $10M for Ethically Sourced Cobalt Production

The Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario are collaboratively awarding $5 million each to the First Cobalt Corporation for the domestic production of battery-grade cobalt sulfate, an essential element used to develop long-range electric vehicles (EVs).

“Our government is proud to invest in North America’s first producer of battery-grade cobalt sulphate, First Cobalt Corporation. This investment will help to create more than 100 jobs, reduce the company’s environmental footprint and ensure EV manufacturers across North America have access to a secure supply of ethically sourced cobalt.”
– Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages, and Minister responsible for FedNor

Administered through FedNor Ontario and the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC), this government funding support allows First Cobalt Corporation to advance its hydrometallurgical cobalt refinery. When complete, the facility will be the first and only facility of its kind in North America, capable of producing 25,000 tonnes of battery-grade cobalt sulfate per year and representing an immense total five percent of the global market for refined cobalt.

About First Cobalt Corporation

Cobalt is a hard, radiant metal with low thermal conductivity and high energy density. It is primarily used for certain rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, especially for EV production, to attain constancy and extended battery life. While 90% of the Earth’s cobalt is currently mined as a by-product of copper or nickel, First Cobalt aims to transform that process.

First Cobalt Corporation is a North American cobalt production organization whose core asset is their First Cobalt Refinery located in North Cobalt, Ontario. Their business objective is to explore, develop, and refine ethically sourced cobalt within North America for expansion into the global battery-grade materials market. Their main strategic incentive is to become North America’s first and only ethically sourced cobalt refinery capable of producing battery-grade materials.

“Global demand for cobalt is increasing as EVs become more widely adopted. Once fully operational, our refinery will be the only source of domestic cobalt for the North American EV industry. Our value-added processing facility will support the North American and European auto sector with ethically sourced, low carbon cobalt that will power electric vehicles now and into the future.”
– Trent Mell, President & CEO, First Cobalt Corporation

Grants and Loans for Canadian Manufacturing Businesses

Mining and related businesses employ more than 625,000 people across the country and contribute roughly $97 billion a year to the Canadian economy. As one of the largest regional concentrations in Canada, Northern Ontario’s mining industry is a key economic provider that drives social and economic growth and creates jobs and opportunities throughout the region.

There is currently a large volume of government funding available for businesses located in Northern Ontario through the various streams of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) programs which provide grants for hiring Indigenous or non-Indigenous workers, funding for business innovation and/or expansion, and much more.

Discover other available Canadian Manufacturing Funding Programs directly on our website to learn about how government funding may help you meet your business goals.

Want to learn more about government funding opportunities for your Canadian business? Sign up for a free upcoming webinar based on your industry, sector, activity, or general interest in grants, loans, and other incentives.

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