Lithium rivals SQM and Albemarle sign environment deal

An aerial view of the brine pools and processing areas of the Rockwood lithium plant on the Atacama salt flat, the largest lithium deposit currently in production, in the Atacama desert of northern Chile in this file photo dated January 10, 2013. REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado

SANTIAGO (Reuters) - SQM and Albemarle’s Rockwood, two of the world’s biggest lithium producers, have agreed to work together on “environmental administration” of the giant Chilean salt flats where they operate, SQM said on Thursday.

As part of the agreement, Santiago-based SQM SQM_pb.SN said it was dropping a complaint it had been pursuing against rival Rockwood's environmental approval for increased extraction.

Reporting by Rosalba O’Brien; Editing by Cynthia Osterman