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US coal exports to China may double in 2012 - Xcoal

Steel News - Published on Mon, 23 Apr 2012

The chief of top US coal exporter Xcoal Energy & Resources said that US coal exports to China could more than double to over 12 million tonnes in 2012 thanks to depressed freight rates and a fall in domestic demand in the United States.

The expected increase in coal shipments could further push down coal prices in Asia where a supply glut following a deluge from the United States and Colombia has forced prices to slump recently.

Australian Newcastle grade coal has dropped USD 10 a tonne since end-February, the Indonesian coal reference price is down to its lowest in 16 months and South African coal has shed USD 5.

Mr Ernie Thrasher CEO told NEWS.GNOM.ES in an interview that “Exports to China could reach over 12 million tonnes this year based on the annualized numbers.” He said that “We only have data for January and February now, but all anecdotal evidence so far suggests that there are no signs of that diminishing as the year goes on. I think there is enough demand in Asia to absorb enough US cargoes to stem a decline in prices.”

Many US coal sellers have set their eyes on Asia as a shrinking domestic market and tepid demand in Europe have pushed them to look for new customers outside of their traditional markets.

Total US coal exports to China, the world’s largest spot coal buyer, stood at about 5 million tonnes in the first two months of the year, with thermal coal shipments up 5.3% on year to some 3 million tonnes.

China, which relies heavily on coal for power generation, is the world’s No. 1 coal producer, but infrastructure bottlenecks have forced many coastal power plants to turn to cheaper and more accessible imports in recent years.



Posted By : admin on Mon, 23 Apr 2012
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