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Chile to Reduce Lithium Prices by 20% to Spur Demand

SANTIAGO, Chile, Sept. 30 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile S.A. (SQM) (NYSE: SQM; Santiago Stock Exchange: SQM-B, SQM-A) announced today:

Consistent with its business strategy of world leadership based on low costs and abundant high-quality natural resources, SQM has decided to implement a significant reduction of its lithium price levels with the purpose of accelerating demand recovery, creating incentives for research of new lithium uses, and contributing to the sustainable long-term development of the lithium market. Consequently, SQM announced that prices for lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide will be reduced by approximately 20% from current levels for the renewal of all its supply contracts.

With the purpose of ensuring lithium availability, SQM expanded its production capacity to 40 thousand metric tons per year. SQM remains confident in the future of the lithium industry and has taken all the necessary steps to further expand its capacity if required.

The lithium business represented approximately 8% of total revenues and approximately 10% of SQM’s gross margin for the first six months of 2009. Total sales volumes reached, in this same period, approximately 9 thousand metric tons.

SQM is an integrated producer and distributor of specialty plant nutrients, iodine and lithium. Its products are based on the development of high quality natural resources that allow the Company to be leader in costs, supported by a specialized international network with sales in over 100 countries. SQM’s development strategy aims to maintain and strengthen the Company’s world leadership in its three core businesses: Specialty Plant Nutrition, Iodine and Lithium.

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