Tuesday, October 20, 2015

PCI coal trading activity picks up on seaborne market

A couple of transactions involving pulverised coal injection (PCI) coal were reported on the metallurgical coal market on Monday October 19.

A few cargoes of November-laycan mid-vol PCI materials were heard sold to China at $70-71 per tonne cfr, sources said.

However, market participants warned that a potential supply increase in the fourth quarter could weigh on the spot market, in the face of sluggish demand in the winter season and competitive domestic materials.


"Unless there are adverse weather conditions in northern China during winter [which would affect domestic coal production], the demand for imported coking coal will remain sluggish," a trading source told Steel First.


Trading activity outside China was limited. Enquiries were heard from India and Europe, but buying interest remains thin, sources added.


On Global Coal, a 75,000-tonne cargo of premium hard coking coal under the branded bracket was traded at $77.75 per tonne fob Australia. It is not known at the time of writing which of the five brands – Goonyella, Oaky Creek, Moranbah North, North Goonyella and Illawarra – was involved in the transaction.


The cargo's laycan is in December, according to a source with knowledge of the transaction.


Steel First’s cfr Jingtang premium hard coking coal index rose $0.55 per tonne to $86.28 per tonne on Monday, while the fob Australia premium hard coking coal index rose $0.29 per tonne to $80.68 per tonne. 


Both the hard coking coal indices were flat, at $81.71 per tonne cfr and $74.84 per tonne fob. 


On the Dalian Commodity Exchange, the most-traded January coking coal futures contract closed 0.50 yuan ($0.10) per tonne higher for the day, at 565.50 yuan ($89) per tonne. The most-liquid January coke contract closed 4 yuan ($1) lower, at 735 yuan ($116) per tonne.

Buying momentum builds up on seaborne met coal market

Trading momentum appears to be picking up on the seaborne metallurgical coal market, though the tonnages involved are becoming smaller and smaller.

There were at least nine deals reported over the past two days, compared with ten for the whole of last week, according to Steel First’s records.


Transactions concluded this week all involve smaller tonnages compared with last week’s full Panamax or Capesize shipments.


Of these latest nine deals, as least five cargoes are bound for China. 


Most Chinese mills are keeping a very close eye on their cost as well as raw materials inventory levels, source told Steel First on Tuesday October 20. 


"We don’t have any immediate plans to buy imported materials. Even if we want to buy, it will be in small quantities," a mill source told Steel First. 


The mill’s immediate priority is to control its production costs in the face of a depressed steel market, a predicament faced by most other steelmakers in the country, the source said. As such, the more competitively priced domestic coal as well as port materials are a more attractive option for them, though they are not completely taking their eyes off the seaborne market, he added.


A second Chinese mill source expects the steel market to only recover in spring, as "the long winter has just started". 


Some other Chinese mill sources told Steel First that they were still looking for cargoes, though they are more the exception than the rule.


On Global Coal, a number of offers under the branded bracket were reported at $78-78.50 per tonne fob Australia, according to sources. These are cargoes of one of the following products: Goonyella, Moranbah North, North Goonyella, Illawarra and Oaky Creek. 


Steel First’s cfr China premium hard coking coal index inched up by $0.32 per tonne on Tuesday to $86.60 per tonne while the fob Australia premium hard coking coal index fell $0.18 per tonne to $80.50 per tonne.
The hard coking coal indices were both unchanged, at $81.71 per tonne cfr China and $74.84 per tonne fob Australia.


On the Dalian Commodity Exchange, the most-traded January coking coal futures contract closed 4 yuan ($0.60) higher on Tuesday, at 569.50 yuan ($90) per tonne. The most-liquid January coke contract closed 3 yuan ($0.50) higher, at 738 yuan ($116) per tonne.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Heatwave pushes up European coal prices

European coal prices rose over the past week as a heatwave buoyed power demand, while Australian prices were pulled down due to slower purchases by key Asian importers. 

Meteorological data in Thomson Reuters Eikon showed aggregate average temperatures in Germany, France, Austria and Switzerland would reach 25 degrees Celsius on Wednesday, six degrees above the seasonal norm, and rise further to 29 degrees by Saturday to remain above the norm until mid-July. 

In Britain, temperatures are expected to be almost 8 degrees Celsius above the seasonal norm of 15.35 degrees on Wednesday and are likely to remain above the norm for at least a week. 

"Supply in the Atlantic remains relatively tight," brokerage Marex Spectron said in a note to clients. 

Physical coal cargoes for prompt delivery into Europe's main terminals at Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Antwerp last settled at $59.20 a tonne, the highest settlement since early May, while South African cargo prices bounced off a 2015 closing low of $58.20 a tonne reached on June 26 to $60.45 a tonne by the end of the month. 

The stronger physical prices also pushed up coal futures, with API2 2016 contracts rising to $60.40 a tonne, from a 2015 low of just above $55 touched in April. 

Traders said a heatwave that has hit most of Europe this week was pushing up power demand and fuel prices in the region. 

In the Pacific basin, however, slowing demand was weighing on prices. Australian physical coal prices weakened $1.7 a tonne since June 26, although at $61.15 a tonne for prompt cargoes from its Newcastle terminal they remained at a premium over South African and European benchmarks. 

Japan data showed the country's thermal coal imports fell over 15% between May 2014 and May 2015 to just under 6-million tonnes, most of which came from Australia. 

Australian government data published this week showed that it expected its 2015/16 thermal coal exports to be 201.7-million tonnes, up slightly from 200.8-million tonnes for 2014/2015. 

It also said that it expected average 2015 thermal coal prices of $68 a tonne, down $2 from its previous estimate.


EDITED BY: REUTERS

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Metallurgical Coal Outlook

Benchmark prices for high-quality met coal for the third quarter of 2015 settled at $93 a metric ton. The second quarter benchmark of $110 was already tracking roughly $10 below the settlements from the past four quarters. 

“Once supply cuts take effect, we expect prices to improve somewhat; however, any material recovery is increasingly appearing unlikely over the next 18 months,” said Moody’s. 

The ratings agency estimated that the about 300-million-ton seaborne market was currently oversupplied by roughly 5% to 10%, with global suppliers, mostly in Australia and the US, having already announced supply cuts of over 30-million metric tonnes since early 2014. 

However, these were slow to take hold, Moody’s noted. Production volumes were also being propped up by cost curves shifting lower, owing to falling oil prices and currencies weakening against the US dollar, particularly the Australian dollar, the source of over half of global met coal production. 

“Despite the downward trend of the global cost curve, we believe a significant portion of global met coal production remains uneconomic and further production cuts will be necessary to bring the markets back into balance,” Moody’s warned.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

What's driving Asia's spot met coal price rebound?

What's driving Asia's spot met coal price rebound?



In this podcast, Platts editors Edwin Yeo and Kenneth Foo analyze the factors that have contributed to the recent rebound in metallurgical coal spot prices, its impact on quarterly negotiations between Japanese steel mills and large mining companies, as well as China's gradual acceptance of seaborne Australian coal.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Australian coal prices rise as scorching Asian heat pushes up demand

Australian coal prices have risen almost 8% since the beginning of June as a drought in South Asia pushes up power demand, although the overall sentiment in the sector remains bearish due to falling imports by other major Asian buyers. 

Coal prices for prompt physical delivery from its Newcastle terminal have risen 7.85% since the beginning of the month to a last settlement of $62.50/t. 

That rise puts it at parity with South African cargoes for the first time since early May. 

It puts both southern hemisphere prices almost $5/t  above cargoes sold to Europe's ports of Amsterdam, Rotterdam or Antwerp (ARA), which also include the cost of freight, making their discount in real terms even steeper. 

The higher prices in South Africa and Australia, which largely export to Asia, are a result of scorching weather linked to the El Nino pattern in South Asian countries like India, Pakistan and also Vietnam. 

The El Nino phenomenon is spurring power demand and resulting in lower exports from countries like Vietnam and higher import orders from local utilities. 

Commodity brokerage Marex Spectron said it was "bullish as the supply conditions remain relatively tight in the short term." 

The overall outlook for the sector; however, remains one of oversupply as economies across Asia slow and most countries make efforts to increase the use of cleaner energy sources.

China's coal imports fell around 40% in the first five months of the year as the policies aimed at cutting imports of low-quality grades and increasing the use of cleaner energy bite.

In Japan, Asia's second biggest economy, official data showed on Wednesday that imports of thermal coal for power generation declined 15.3% in May to 5.98-million tonnes. 

South Korea's imports of coal fell 10.5% in May from a year earlier, customs data showed this week. 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Glencore sees slight coal undersupply

Mining and marketing giant Glencore sees a slight undersupply of coal on the horizon. 

Speaking on video to Creamer Media’s senior staff writer Zandile Mavuso at Glencore’s donation of a new R75-million state-of-the-art school to South Africa’s Department of Basic Education, Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg outlined higher expected future demand for seaborne coal, owing to the world’s biggest coal exporter Indonesia absorbing a large volume of previously exported coal for its own new coal-fired power stations and India, China and Korea also requiring coal for new thermal stations. 

“There seems to be a little bit of, we believe, undersupply,” Glasenberg commented in the attached video interview. (To watch video, click on icon in picture). 

“We’re still very positive on coal in the future,” he said, putting current global seaborne coal demand at some 950-million tonnes of coal a year, with Indonesia poised to supply progressively less than its current 450-million tonnes a year over the next five years. 

While the availability of shale gas was allowing the US to use less coal, new coal-fired power stations in India, China, Korea and Indonesia were driving demand. 

From 2015 to 2020, at least 150-million tonnes of Indonesian coal would be used domestically rather than being exported. 

As coal remained the cheapest form of energy, developing nations were still building and developing coal-fired stations to grow their economies. 

India, which was currently importing 200-million tonnes of coal a year, was set to increase that to 250-million tonnes and potentially 300-million tonnes of coal a year. 

The seaborne coal market would thus continue to grow with the potential for wealthier nations to assist developing nations to burn coal in a cleaner manner, which was possible.

“We’ve said before that wealthier nations should assist the poorer nations to develop better coal-fired facilities so that they can burn coal in a cleaner manner,” Glasenberg said. 

On when the time would be right for more investment in coal mining, he outlined the necessity of that being triggered by much higher demand than supply, “which right now looks pretty balanced”. 

While he expected demand to rise in 2017 and 2018, he strongly reiterated the London-, Hong Kong- and Johannesburg-listed company's firm policy of only investing in increased production when the company is certain of not hurt existing production. 

“You’ve got to assess the future market before you put in more of whichever commodity you are producing and you’ve got to assess demand. For coal, if the demand is not there, we’ll cut back production,” Glasenberg promised.  

Investec Securities said in a note on Tuesday that the projection by Australia's Queensland Resources Council of record coal exports from Queensland this year and 5% higher coal exports from New South Wales supported the Glencore view. 

"Prices may be weak but demand remains strong and consumers must be gleeful," commented Investec, which added that exports were being buoyed by demand from India, owing to its shifted emphasis towards cleaner coals.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Record coal exports forecast from Queensland

Despite the downturn in prices, Queensland coal exports were expected to reach a record 220-million tonnes during the 2015 financial year, which ends in June, the Queensland Resources Council (QRC) reported on Monday. 

QRC CEO Michael Roche said that there was still significant demand for the state’s commodities, as international markets continued to grow in the face of growing energy demands. 

At the end of May, year-to-date coal exports were 200-million tonnes. 

“This new record level of coal exports will be 5% higher than last year's 209-million tonnes, driven by continued strong demand from China, Japan, India and Korea for the Bowen basin's high-quality coking coals, used in production of raw steel. 

“In the medium term, we expect those Queensland export numbers to increase with the growth in demand for Queensland thermal coal from energy hungry nations such as India,” Roche said. 

He pointed to a recent report by the Office of the Chief Economist in the Federal Industry Department, which revealed India's demand for coal was set to grow significantly owing to the construction of new coal-fired power stations that require the high-quality thermal coal Australia can deliver. 

Construction in India was also growing and Queensland was ready to supply more of its coking coal to service growing steel production, Roche said. 

“The Indian Minister for State for Power, Coal and New and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal recently said that coal would remain the mainstay of India's energy needs. 

“From 2017, India's new coal-fired projects require high-energy low-ash coal. India's domestic coal is largely high-ash low-energy.” 

Roche added that there were about 300-million people in India who did not have access to basic electricity, and added that the Indian government has been clear it wanted to change that. 

“Despite the claims of the well-funded anti-coal activist campaign, the future looks bright for Queensland coal to meet strong energy and steel demand in developing nations.” 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Wesfarmers settles Q2 hard coking coal contract price at $104 per tonne

Wesfarmers Resources has concluded the contract price for its Curragh hard coking coal at $104 per tonne fob Australia for the June quarter, the Australian miner said on Wednesday April 29.
This is down $7 per tonne from the first quarter of this year. The decrease, however, was in line with the drop seen in the benchmark settled between Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp and Anglo American, at $109.50 per tonne fob.
During January-March, Curragh produced 2.2 million tonnes of metallurgical coal, down 8.3% year-on-year and almost 5% quarter-on-quarter due to "wet weather impacts in January". However, production increased by 9.3% to 9.2 million tonnes for the 12 months to March 31, according to the statement.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Arbitrator blocks CCX talks to sell Colombia mines to Blackstone

An international arbitrator ruled that Brazil's CCX Carvão da Colombia may not enter talks to sell three coal-mining projects in Colombia to investors represented by the Blackstone Group, CCX's main shareholder said on Wednesday. 

The emergency injunction an International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) arbitrator is in place until it can make a final ruling on a request by Yildirim Holding, according to a statement sent to Brazil's securities regulator CVM by Centennial Asset Management, CCX's controlling shareholder. 

The ruling also prohibits negotiations over the three mine projects with any other company besides Yildirim which entered into an asset-purchase agreement for the mines with CCX on April 26, 2014, CCX said. 

CCX has said it still has pending issues in its asset sale talks with Yildirim, but that the Blackstone-led offer is "more immediate and economically more interesting." 

Centennial Asset Management is owned by tycoon and former Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista. CCX is one of the last pieces of his EBX energy, mining, shipbuilding and port operations group which crumbled in the face of missed targets, bankruptcies and falling commodities prices in 2013 and 2014. 

The ICC arbitrator denied another Yildirim request to block the sale of CCX stock. 

Earlier this month, CCX received an $170-million unsolicited offer for the Cañaverales and Papayal openpit coal mining projects and an underground mining project from a group of sovereign investment funds and other large investors represented by Blackstone, the world's largest private-equity investor. 

All three projects are in Colombia's La Guajira department.

BY: REUTERS
EDITED BY: CREAMER MEDIA REPORTER 
http://www.miningweekly.com

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Indian state-owned mills settle Q2 met coal at $109.50/mt FOB, down $7.50/mt from Q1

Indian state-owned steelmakers Steel Authority of India or SAIL and Rashtriya Ispat Nigam Limited or RINL have agreed April-June premium low-vol coking coal prices with Australia's Anglo Americanand US' Peabody at $109.50/mt FOB Australia, three sources close to the matter said Monday, March 23.


The Q2 price, settled late last week, was $7.50/mt lower than the mills' term deals for Q1 metallurgical coal and down $10.50/mt from Q2 2014.

The settlement price was in line with that agreed between the mining companies and Japanese steelmakers earlier last week.


Multiple sources said suppliers had followed a spot deal agreed between BHP Billiton-Mitsubishi Alliance or BMA and Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation rather than a price reflecting substantial contracted volumes.


US miners Alpha Natural Resources and Logan & Kanawha or L&K have inked Q2 deals with the Indian mills at $100/mt FOB US for five cargoes, sources said.


Of these, Alpha sold three Panamaxes of its Cambria Creek brand to SAIL, and L&K two shipments of its mid-vol material.


The Q2 prices for premium low-vol coals, such as Anglo American's German Creek brand and mid-vol material like Anglo's Moranbah North, were set at $109.50/mt FOB Australia.


Premium low-vol HCC was last assessed by Platts Friday at $108.25/mt CFR China, or a Panamax freight-derived netback of $100.20/mt FOB Eastern Australia -- $9.30/mt below the Q2 settlement level.


Anglo American will supply 2.7 million mt of coal to SAIL for the fiscal year starting April, including 9-10 Panamaxes for Q2, sources said.


This includes a quantity of Dawson Valley HCC, a unique blend targeted at India's steel public sector. RINL will reportedly obtain about a third of SAIL's annual volumes from the Australian miner.


Peabody will supply 750,000 mt for the year, sources said, adding this will include two Panamaxes for Q2.


BMA was still in negotiations for Q2 volumes with buyers, according to sources. The miner is understood to be opting for finalizing a pricing arrangement that could involve index-linked fallback clauses.


BMA and Anglo American declined comment on the quarterly negotiations, while Brisbane-based officials from Peabody could not be reached for comment. SAIL officials were unable to respond by time of publication Monday.


By Kenneth Foo, Platts
Edited by Wendy Wells, Platts

Friday, February 27, 2015

Colombian mining tax regime counterproductive to investment, profit

The Colombian mining tax regime has imposed a significantly high tax burden on marginal investments in mining, discriminated across minerals and it was counterproductive to project profitability, pointing to a need to improve the country's mining tax regime.
This was according to a report released on Thursday by researchers from the Universidad de los Andes, in Colombia, and the School of Public Policy at the University of Calgary, in Canada.
The report also included a comprehensive comparison of the Colombian fiscal regime with those of other Latin American countries that had significant mining industries.
Report authors Duanjie Chen of the School of Public Policy and Guillermo Perry, a former Colombian minister of finance and public credit, and minister of mining and energy, argued that the existence of differential royalty rates by mineral, based on the gross value of sales at mine mouth, were in some cases inordinately high, representing a large fraction of total government revenue from mining.
For these same reasons, the actual regime taxed most mines excessively during periods of low prices, while failing to capture a significant part of net revenues in periods of high prices.
To deal with these deficiencies, the report recommended the introduction of a resource rent tax and the reduction of royalty rates to a common 5% across minerals.
In doing so, the Colombian mining tax regime could gain significantly in efficiency and competitiveness compared with other mining countries, while augmenting revenues during price booms, when operational margins increased sharply, especially from the most profitable mature mining projects.
Overall, this reform would make the tax regime more neutral, lower administrative costs and make Colombia more competitive and attractive to investment, while also preserving a reasonable revenue stream to the government and people of Colombia.
The country currently had the largest coal reserves in Latin America and was second to Brazil in hydroelectric potential. The country also had significant reserves of oil, nickel and gold.
As a share of the country's gross domestic product, mining increased from less than 1.8% before 2000 to about 2.3% from 2005 onwards. Mining exports rose from about 10% of total exports in 2000 to a peak of 25% in 2009 and had remained above 20% since then, both owing to increased production and high export prices.
By: Henry Lazenby at Mining Weekly

Friday, January 30, 2015

Whitehaven confident of coal’s future despite lacklustre market

Despite the declining coal prices, ASX-listed producer Whitehaven Coal remains upbeat about the company’s prospects for the future.
“While not ignoring the current weakness in coal markets, we remain confident that coal has a growing role to play in the world’s future energy requirements and that the high-quality coals produced by Whitehaven will be in strong demand from Whitehaven’s key Asian markets for many years into the future,” said MD Paul Flynn on Friday.
During the six months ended December, Whitehaven set both production and sales records, on the back of its Maules Creek mine, in New South Wales, producing and shipping its first coal.
Saleable coal production for the interim period reached 4.4-million tonnes, which was 9% higher than the previous corresponding period.
During the same period, a record six-million tonnes of managed coal was sold, 4.7-million of which was Whitehaven’s share, generating revenue of A$371.8-million.
“We are delighted to have achieved a wide range of very positive financial, strategic and operational outcomes during the half, in spite of a lacklustre coal   market,” said Flynn.
“Importantly, we have been able to commence production at our Maules Creek project three months ahead of schedule,” Flynn said, adding that the project would be transformational for Whitehaven as it would double production.
Furthermore, Flynn pointed out that Whitehaven had been able to maintain its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation margin in a period of falling commodity prices by improving the efficiency of each of its operations, and continuing with sustainable cost cutting at all of its mines.
The cost reduction programme delivered an average cost of A$63/t in the half-year period, down from the A$71/t reported in the previous corresponding half.
“The 6% reduction in costs from the previous half and the 11% reduction from the previous corresponding half were pleasing, and shows our leadership team is making a difference,” Flynn said.
He added that the fundamentals of the business were also continuing to improve, with new low-cost production established at Maules Creek and more upside potential identified at the Narrabri mine.
“These two tier one assets will underpin Whitehaven for many years into the future.”

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Colombia adopts Argus coking coal and freight assessments in volatile market

Colombia's mining regulatory agency ANM has started pricing coking coal for royalty calculations using price assessments published by global energy and commodity news and price reporting agency Argus.  This expands Colombian´s innovative use of market-based tax calculations to the coking coal sector and is joined by enhanced use of Argus indexation in the thermal coal tax formula.
Colombian authorities will begin using Argus fob Colombia coking coal price assessments to calculate market values for export shipments from the country's coal mines. Colombia's market-based pricing will benefit all stakeholders in the country's coal industry during a period of historically low prices. The Colombian programme will provide relief for producers while coal prices are low, keeping these industries competitive in international markets. And it will ensure that the Colombian sector benefits when coking coal prices recover.
Argus exclusively publishes these fob Colombia coking coal price assessments, which Latin America's coal markets have rapidly adopted for robust, reliable price indexation. The assessments are published in Argus Steel Feedstocks, a service covering coking coal, iron ore and ferrous scrap markets around the world.
Argus freight assessments have also been incorporated into Colombia's coal royalties for thermal coal produced in the central region of the country, joining the Argus/IHS McCloskey API 2 index for this calculation. Argus' assessment of Panamax rates from Colombia to Rotterdam will be used to calculate a netback price from the northwest Europe trading hub. These freight assessments are available in Argus Coal Daily International and Argus Freight.
"Argus price assessments are used extensively by governments as independent references for taxation and other purposes," Argus Media chairman and chief executive Adrian Binks said. "We fully expect other growing and liberalising economies in Latin America to take similar steps in the near future."
Colombia is one of the top coal exporters in the world, and is the third-biggest exporter of coking coal in the Americas. Coking coal is used to make metallurgical coke, which is a feedstock in primary steel production.
Argus coal price assessments are widely used in physical and derivative contracts around the world. Its transparent price assessment methodology has been increasingly adopted throughout the Americas and globally. Argus price assessments are used by major energy producers and consumers as price references in long-term supply contracts, and by market participants for portfolio mark-to-market, counterparty exposure management, derivatives and a wide range of investment and market analysis purposes.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

US, Russian coking coal prices holding up better than Australian cargoes

Prices for commonly available mainstream brands of Australian hard coking coal into China remained under pressure on Tuesday January 20.

However, materials from other countries that contain lower ash and sulphur are holding up relatively well price-wise.

A number of top Australia brands were heard done in the region of $115 per tonne cfr China while a second-tier product is said to have changed hands at around $107 per tonne cfr. 

But recent transactions involving Russian and US cargoes did not move in tandem with their Australian counterparts, according to market sources. They either traded higher than expected or kept to levels similar to those over the past month, unlike the weakening Australian brands.


Participants told that the supply of low-ash, low-sulphur materials has been tighter of late, even as multiple cargoes of premium Australian coal were continuously pushed into the market.

Several sellers were heard to have slashed offers in order to move cargoes or to generate better cash flows, sources said.

"We’re staying away from the market now as we wait for more clarity," a source at a large trading firm stated.

CFR Jingtang premium hard coking coal index fell  $0.19 per tonne to $114.69 per tonne on Tuesday while the cfr Jingtang hard coking coal index shed $0.30 per tonne to $106.42 per tonne. 

The fob Australia premium hard coking coal index lost $1.60 per tonne to $112.43 per tonne while the fob Australia hard coking coal index dipped $0.57 per tonne to $101.07 per tonne.

On the Dalian Commodity Exchange, the most-traded May coking coal futures contract closed at 726 yuan ($118) per tonne on Tuesday, up slightly from Monday’s close of 724 yuan ($118) per tonne. The most-traded May coke contract closed lower at 1,038 yuan ($169) per tonne, compared with the previous day’s close of 1,045 yuan ($170) per tonne.

Rio Tinto disclosed on Tuesday that it produced 1.6 million tonnes of hard coking coal and 728,000 tonnes of semi-soft coking coal during the fourth quarter of last year. The figures brought its full-year total for hard coking coal to 7.1 million tonnes and semi-soft coking coal to 3.2 million tonnes – year-on-year falls of 8% and 17%, respectively.