CHINA COAL COLLAPSE,CHINA POWER CRUNCH AFTER FLOOD HIT CHINA, CHINA-AUSTRALIA CO.mp4
China brought in 32.88 million tons of coal in September, up 76% from a year earlier, data from the General Administration of Customs showed on Wednesday. The monthly total was the fifth largest on record, according to Reuters calculations.
Reuters reported last week that China has been releasing Australian coal from bonded storage but hasn’t lifted an almost year-long, unofficial import ban on the fuel.
Exports from other key suppliers, such as Russia and Mongolia, have been curtailed by limited rail capacity, while shipments from Indonesia have been hindered by rainy weather, traders said.
Power plants also seek to diversify coal sources from niche market such as Kazakhstan.
China’s Premier Li Keqiang said in an online meeting with Mongolian Prime Minister Oyun-Erdene Luvsannamsrai that he would be “happy to see” an expansion in the volume of coal traded between the two countries, the official Xinhua news agency reported late on Tuesday.
The rise in prices and coal import data comes a day after Beijing announced it would allow power plants to charge commercial customers market-based prices for power, in a significant break from previous policy that allowed industry to lock in fixed-price power deals with suppliers.
The policy shift, which is expected to spur more coal-fired power generation, is the latest in a raft of measures designed to ease the power supply crunch that has forced several industry sectors in China to curb power use in recent weeks.