Coal exports to steady before a slide

Original article by Joe Kelly
The Australian – Page: 4 : 9-Feb-21

The New South Wales government has forecast that demand for the state’s thermal coal in Asia will remain strong at more than 600 million metric tonnes a year until 2030. However, this is expected to gradually decline to about 470 million metric tonnes in 2050 as the global transition to alternative sources of energy generation gathers pace. The government document also notes that the industry contributes about 22,000 direct jobs to the state economy, as well as some 89,000 indirect jobs.

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Emerging Asia’s appetite for coal may be fading

Original article by Elouise Fowler
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 17 : 15-Jan-21

A report from the Global Energy Monitor on future demand for thermal coal in Asia may have implications for one of Australia’s biggest sources of export revenue. The report concludes that developing nations in the region may build just 25 gigawatts of new coal-fired power stations in 2021, compared with the 125GW that was planned five years ago. Australia’s thermal coal exports to developing countries in Asia have increased significantly in recent years, offsetting a decline in demand from traditional buyers in the region as they adopt net zero emission targets.

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GLOBAL ENERGY MONITOR

South32 set to dump coal mine project

Original article by Nick Evans
The Australian – Page: 16 : 12-Jan-21

Diversified miner South32 is believed to be seeking a buyer for its 50 per cent stake in the Eagle Downs coking coal project in Queensland after deciding not to proceed with the partially-built mine. South32 acquired its stake in the project from Vale in 2018, several years after Eagle Downs was mothballed amid a fall in coal prices. South32 recently received a feasibility study on the project. Chinese steelmaker Baowu owns the other half of the Eagle Downs project.

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SOUTH32 LIMITED – ASX S32, CHINA BAOWU STEEL GROUP CORPORATION LIMITED, VALE SA

80 coal ships in China stand-off

Original article by Perry Williams, Will Glasgow
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 27-Nov-20

Australia’s coal exports to China fell by 96 per cent in the first three weeks of November. Industry sources have indicated that 82 bulk carriers are currently in Chinese waters and awaiting permission to unload 8.8 million tonnes of Australian coal. China’s ban on coal imports from Australia has forced producers to find alternative markets for their coal, often at a discount. Meanwhile, North American coal is now being sold to China at a premium to Australian coal.

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BHP joins Baowu to explore green steel

Original article by Jared Lynch
The Australian – Page: 16 : 9-Nov-20

BHP will work with Chinese steel producer Baowu to develop low-carbon technologies for the global steel industry. BHP’s memorandum of understanding with Baowu includes provision for an investment of up to $US35m ($48m) in technologies aimed at reducing the industry’s carbon emissions. However, BHP still expects coking coal to remain a key steel-making input for many years. Coking coal accounted for $US1.9bn of BHP’s earnings in 2019-20.

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BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, CHINA BAOWU STEEL GROUP CORPORATION LIMITED

Whitehaven won’t alter dividend policy despite setbacks

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 16 : 26-Oct-20

Whitehaven Coal’s lenders recently agreed to relax its debt covenants after the company sought relief due to a severe downturn in coal prices. However, a condition of that relaxation will constrain the company’s ability to pay dividends until its debt levels fall below certain thresholds. Whitehaven had paid out a record final dividend of $298 million in August 2019, and chairman Mark Vaile says he has no regrets about the payment. He says the company may need to be a bit more conservative about capital management in the future, while he notes that the 2019 payout followed two successive years of record profits.

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WHITEHAVEN COAL LIMITED – ASX WHC

New Hope cuts jobs, dividend after loss

Original article by Perry Williams
The Australian – Page: 16 : 23-Sep-20

Coal producer New Hope Corporation has posted a net loss of $156.7m for the year to 31 July, following a $210.4m profit for the previous financial year. The latest result was marred by writedowns totalling $346m, including a $110.7m impairment charge against its New Acland thermal coal mine. New Hope has also retrenched 175 workers at the New Acland mine, whose proposed expansion is subject to a legal challenge from environmentalists. A total of 23 jobs have also been cut at its head office and Brisbane coal terminal, while shareholders will not receive a final dividend.

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NEW HOPE CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX NHC

Labor hardhead urges Premier to approve coalmine

Original article by Michael McKenna
The Australian – Page: 1 & 2 : 13-Jul-20

Labor senator Anthony Chisholm has urged the Queensland government to approve the $900 million expansion of the New Acland coal mine, despite a legal challenge before the High Court. Labor’s former state secretary was considered the architect of Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk’s election win in 2015. Chisholm notes that the government has been "cautious" in its handling of the New Acland approval, opting to wait until all legal issues have been resolved . However, he contends that circumstances have changed, and that jobs will be lost if approval for the extension is not granted.

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NEW HOPE CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX NHC, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

Price collapse burying 31pc of coal mines

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 14 & 16 : 11-May-20

The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in a sharp fall in demand from major thermal coal buyers such as Japan and India. This has in turn seen the price of top quality coal from New South Wales and Queensland falling by 27 per cent and 30 per cent respectively. Rory Simington of Wood Mackenzie estimates that about 31 per cent of Australia’s thermal coal exports are unprofitable at current prices. He adds that a significant proportion of Australia’s coal output is sold via long-term contracts. However, the recent price falls will eventually flow through to future contracts.

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WOOD MACKENZIE

Coal vital to post-virus boost: minister

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 10 : 6-May-20

Federal Resources Minister Keith Pitt has stressed the importance of resources projects to the Australian economy as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic. He has urged banks to continue to support coal projects, as a growing number of lenders move to reduce their exposure to the sector. Pitt has also emphasised the need to address the issue of ‘green lawfare’, which resulted in Adani’s Carmichael coal project being subject to multiple legal challenges.

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AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF INDUSTRY, SCIENCE, ENERGY AND RESOURCES, ADANI MINING PTY LTD