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China Takes More Russia, Mongolia Coking Coal in August



September 23, 2022 - China's coking coal imports in August rose to this year's largest monthly intake, driven by increased Russian and Mongolian purchases.

China imported 6.41mn t of coking coal in August, up by 5pc from July and up 37pc from a year earlier, according to Chinese customs data. January-August imports rose by 25pc from a year earlier to 38.6mn t, with imports from Russia increasing by 81pc to 12.4mn t

Russian shipments of 1.9mn t in August were up by 60pc from a year earlier as Chinese buyer favoured discounted Russian coal. But they were down by 5pc on the previous month as some shipments were affected by rail issues. US imports rose by 67pc from the previous month to 505,330t, while Indonesian imports increased by 52pc to 240,500t.

Australian imports resurfaced in August at 87,004t as some stranded cargoes were released into Chinese ports, although the unofficial ban on fresh Australian coal remains in place.

Arrivals from Mongolia in August hit the highest level in almost two years, increasing by 4pc from a month earlier and more than double from the previous year to 2.87mn t. Supplies of Mongolian coal have been steadily increasing despite a resurgence in Covid-19 cases at the China-Mongolia border. The number of coal trucks crossing the border at the Ganqimaodu customs point was at 656 on 21 September.

The Argus premium low-volatile hard coking coal cfr China index averaged $286.36/t in August, down by 19pc from a month and a year earlier. The Argus premium low-volatile hard coking coal price fob Australia averaged $242.93/t, up by 7pc from a year earlier.


China coking coal imports ('000t)
  Aug '22 Aug '21 ± % Jan-Aug '22 Jan-Aug '21 ± %
Australia 87 0 n/a 2,090 0 n/a
Russia 1,902 1,190 59.8 12,355 6,828 80.9
Canada 798 736 8.4 5,544 5,631 -1.5
US 505 1,213 -58.4 3,679 5,720 -35.7
Other 241 467 -48.5 1,789 2,638 -32.2
Seaborne total 3,533 3,607 -2.0 25,456 20,818 22.3
Mongolia 2,873 1,076 167.0 13,133 9,920 32.4
Total 6,406 4,683 36.8 38,589 30,737 25.5