China’s measures to boost coal production and deliveries to cool market frenzy about coal availability and to safeguard energy security have seen positive results, according to the National Development and Reform Commission. As of November 2, total thermal coal stocks at the country’s power plants reached 110 million tonnes, or 31 million tonnes higher than at the end of September, according to an NDRC post on November 3.
Coal stocks at the country’s power stations have been climbing since October 19, with supplies to these plants continuing to reach new record highs, NDRC disclosed, adding that the supply surplus against consumption had reached as high as 2.3 million tonnes/day.
From the start of this month, Chinese coal production has maintained high-speed growth too, with nationwide coal production reaching 11.7 million t/d by November 2, the second highest daily output so far this year and 1 million t/d higher than in early October, NDRC noted. The country’s coal production is expected to exceed 12 million t/d, as more measures to boost production take effect, the commission said.
For example, coal stocks at Qinhuangdao port, a core coal transhipment port in North China’s Hebei, have hit 5 million tonnes, or 1 million tonnes above the level in early October, with over 6,000 rail wagons hauling coal to the port every day since late October, NDRC declared. Each railway wagon heading to Qinhuangdao can carry 70-80 tonnes of coal, Mysteel Global noted.
With the fast recovery in coal supply nationwide and rising coal stocks at both ports and power houses, domestic coal prices continue to decline. Recently, some leading coal mining enterprises lowered their prices for 5,500 kcal/kg thermal coal to below Yuan 1,000/tonne ($156.3/t), NDRC noted, adding with the sustained improvement in the supply-demand balance, the country’s coal prices would quickly return to a “rational level”.
Source: Sean Xie and Russ McCulloch
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