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China Nears Lifting Ban On Australian Coal Imports


China is nearing to lifting the more than two-year unofficial ban on Australian thermal and coking coal imports for its power and steel plants, as the country looks to expand its procurement origins and reduce trade flows disruptions following the Russia-Ukraine conflict, market sources told S&P Commodity Insights.

  • China’s state-owned power plants -- China Datang Corp., China Huaneng Group Co., China Energy Investment Corp. -- and steel producer China Baowu Steel Group Corp. have received intimations from the government to import Australian coal.
  • China’s NDRC held discussions on 3 Jan about reopening coal trade with Australia, according to sources.
  • The ban is expected to be relaxed on a miner-to-end-user basis and will likely not extend for general trading purposes, sourced added.
  • Chinese domestic 5,500 kcal/kg NAR thermal coal was priced at Yuan 1,210/mt ($175.30/mt) on 3 Jan Chinese market participants said.
  • Platts assessed Newcastle 5,500 kcal/kg NAR coal with 23% ash at $134/mt FOB on 3 Jan.

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