In China, spot prices for NAR 5500 coal edged down to $183.4/t.
In the domestic market of China, a decrease in prices is seen in ports and at cuts against the backdrop of a decrease in production by the chemical sector. Ammonia and fertilizer producers, consuming medium- and high CV materials, have been losing money in the past few weeks. Power plants using low CV coal are supplied under existing contracts and do not rely heavily on the spot market.
An increasing number of market participants are expressing concern about negative forecasts for industrial production in the coming weeks. Thus, cement production for H1 22 fell by 15% to 977 mio t, which is the poorest performance in 11 years. The decline in cement prices since mid-March amounted to about 20%. Fertilizer producers witness lower capacity utilization. The decline in coal prices comes despite hot weather and increased demand for air conditioning in many parts of the country.
Quotations of the Australian material fell to $405/t. An improved interest of European buyers in this material is reported. In addition, Australian producers with processing facilities are trying to process medium CV high-ash material into a premium product and sell it to the high-margin markets of Japan, Korea and Taiwan.
The Australian rail operator The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has fully restored rail transportation to the port of Newcastle, halted due to flooding caused by heavy rains. According to estimates, about 4.3 mio t of coal couldn’t be delivered to the port during the idle period from July 5 to 14. Meanwhile, meteorological agencies expect a new wave of heavy rainfall in the region.
The Indonesian Coal Index 5900 kcal/kg GAR traded at $184.00/t FOB Kalimantan. Chinese consumers remain interested in low CV coal from Indonesia and use it to blend with high CV coal produced domestically or imported from Russia.
Metallurgical coal prices continued to decline to $230/ton amid downtrend in the steel market and reduced demand from steel mills.