Chinese coal imports down 45.3%





IHS 13-04-2015

China's coal imports plunged 45.3% year on year (y/y) to 32 million tonnes in the first quarter in 2015 due to weak demand amid the slowing economy.

The national coal stock continues to hover aloft around the high levels, with the stock volume amounted to over 3.9 billion tonnes for the past 39 months, according to the China National Coal Association.

The first quarter slump came on the heels of an annual fall in 2014.

In 2014, coal imports dropped 10.9% y/y to about 290 million tonnes due to competition from cheaper domestic coal and government restrictions on coal imports.

The domestic coal output also fell 3.5% y/y to 850 million tonnes, with the sale volume down 4.7% y/y to about 800 million tonnes.

The association predicted that the consumption and output of coal in China would continue to fall, adding to the downward pressure on the coal prices.

In addition, the association called for the tightening of low-quality coal imports and enhancing the examination of the quality of imported coal.

On the domestic side, the association also urged Chinese coal producers to cut the annual output by 5% y/y in 2014.