Li3 Energy Inc., an early stage company pursuing business strategy in lithium mining and energy, today announced it has completed its initial brine sampling program at the Maricunga Project in northern Chile.

Out of the 104 samples the company collected, partial results from 28 samples have been received, with values of up to 1.4 g/l lithium and 10.3 g/l potassium; average values from the samples grade 0.90 g/l lithium and 6.69 g/l potassium, which the company says are superior to many other comparable projects in Argentina.

The remainder of the results are expected soon, and Tom Currin, chief operating officer of Li3 Energy, said the current results support previous sampling and that the full results will validate the project as a promising strategy.

“These partial results tend to confirm the results of the 2007 shallow well sampling program and the historical sampling work performed by CORFO (the Chilean Economic Development Agency). We believe that the final full results will verify that the Maricunga Project is indeed a world class lithium brine property,” Currin stated in the press release.

In December 2010, Li3 Energy signed a non-binding exclusive letter of intent with a group of private companies to acquire 60 percent ownership of the companies, in which they would collectively own the Maricunga Project. Per the agreement, Li3 Energy will pay $6 million and issue a number of shares of Li3 common stock to the companies equal to 30 percent of the outstanding Li3 Energy stock on a post-transaction basis.

The Maricunga acquisition is still subject to satisfactory completion of due diligence, financing of the cash purchase price and work commitment by Li3; the letter will expire on February 28, 2011, if the acquisition has not been completed, unless the parties agree to an extension.

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