BHP energises coal to dodge China import restrictions

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 15 & 18 : 19-Jun-19

BHP is looking at ways to upgrade the quality of thermal coal produced at its Mt Arthur mine in New South Wales, in order to increase exports to Japan and South Korea. The move is aimed at offsetting the impact of China’s restrictions on coal imports from Australia. Coal buyers in Japan and Korea generally prefer coal that contains about 6,000 kilocalories of energy per kilogram, whereas the coal that BHP ships to China typically has 5,500 kilocalories of energy per kilogram.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, YANCOAL AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX YAL, S&P GLOBAL PLATTS

Unions draw strength from spectacular victory at coalmine

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 2 : 17-Jan-19

Wollongong Coal has agreed to a new pay deal to end a strike by labour hire workers at the Wongawilli Colliery in New South Wales. The hourly pay rate of CAS Mine Services employees at the mine will be increased by 12 per cent, and their weekly production bonus will be increased. They will also become permanent workers on fixed-term contracts, while CAS has agreed to negotiate a two-year enterprise agreement that includes two annual pay rises of two per cent. The deal has been welcomed by the Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining & Energy Union.

CORPORATES
WOLLONGONG COAL LIMITED – ASX WLC, CAS MINE SERVICES PTY LTD, CONSTRUCTION, FORESTRY, MARITIME, MINING AND ENERGY UNION OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, ACTU

Ports, mine targeted in CFMEU hit

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 15-Jan-19

Hutchison Ports Australia will be subject to industrial action by the militant Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining & Energy Union. Work bans will commence on 17 January, in response to the stevedoring group’s push to reduce pay rates and leave entitlements under a new workplace agreement. Hutchison will apply for an order from the Fair Work Commission requiring the union to give five days’ notice prior to launching the industrial action. Meanwhile, CFMMEU members at the Wongawilli Colliery in New South Wales have voted to extend strike action for a second week.

CORPORATES
CONSTRUCTION, FORESTRY, MARITIME, MINING AND ENERGY UNION OF AUSTRALIA, MARITIME UNION OF AUSTRALIA, HUTCHISON PORTS AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, WOLLONGONG COAL LIMITED – ASX WLC, JINDAL STEEL AND POWER LIMITED, CAS MINE SERVICES PTY LTD, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY

Unions go to war over labour hire

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 6 : 11-Jan-19

The Construction, Forestry, Maritime, Mining & Energy Union is seeking a 10 per cent pay rise for labour-hire workers at a New South Wales coal mine. The workers at Wongawilli Colliery, who are paid significantly less than workers at other mines in the region, will commence a seven-day strike. CAS Mine Services has warned that the proposed pay rise is not financially viable. The CFMMEU’s national president Tony Maher says the poor treatment of labour-hire workers will be a key issue at the upcoming federal election.

CORPORATES
CONSTRUCTION, FORESTRY, MARITIME, MINING AND ENERGY UNION OF AUSTRALIA, CAS MINE SERVICES PTY LTD, WOLLONGONG COAL LIMITED – ASX WLC, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF JOBS AND SMALL BUSINESS, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

Yancoal moves on Hunter mines

Original article by Eric Johnston
The Australian – Page: 15 : 7-Jan-19

A group of Chinese lenders assumed ownership of the Ashton, Austar and Donaldson coal mines in the Hunter Valley in February 2016, after Yancoal Australia secured a debt funding deal. Yancoal remained operator of the mines, and its Chinese parent Yankuang Group has advised that one of the bond holders has exercised a put option to sell its bonds to Yankuang. Yancoal has indicated that the move is unlikely to have any significant implications for it.

CORPORATES
YANCOAL AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX YAL, YANKUANG CORPORATION GROUP LIMITED, BANK OF CHINA GROUP, INDUSTRIAL BANK COMPANY LIMITED, BOHAI HARVEST RST (SHANHAI) EQUITY INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT COMPANY LIMITED

Austar coal workers in doubt

Original article by Paul Garvey
The Australian – Page: 19 : 10-Jul-18

Yancoal Australia has redeployed most of the workers at its Austar coal mine in New South Wales after it was issued with two prohibition notices by the state’s Resources Regulator. Yancoal will seek a ruling from the Industrial Relations Commission on whether it can access the mine in the wake of the two most recent "coal burst" incidents that forced its closure. Yancoal hopes to at least retrieve longwall mining equipment, even if it cannot resume production.

CORPORATES
YANCOAL AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX YAL, NEW SOUTH WALES. DEPT OF PLANNING AND ENVIRONMENT. RESOURCES REGULATOR, INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS COMMISSION OF NEW SOUTH WALES

Rio links coal exit to policy on climate

Original article by Matt Chambers
The Australian – Page: 17 & 20 : 3-May-18

Rio Tinto chairman Simon Thompson has conceded that the potential impact of climate change policy on the future value of coal assets contributed to its decision to divest its thermal coal assets in New South Wales. Rio Tinto sold the Hunter Valley coal assets for $US2.69bn ($A3.58bn) in 2017. Thompson also noted at the AGM that Rio Tinto is in the process of exiting fossil fuels completely, and he highlighted the company’s progress in reducing its greenhouse gas emissions.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, YANCOAL AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX YAL, GLENCORE PLC, AUSTRALASIAN CENTRE FOR CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY, LGSS PTY LTD, CHURCH OF ENGLAND, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, UNITED STATES. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION, GREAT BRITAIN. SERIOUS FRAUD OFFICE

Gupta buys NSW coal mine from Glencore

Original article by James Thomson
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 14 : 3-Jan-18

Sanjeev Gupta’s GFG Alliance has acquired Glencore’s Tahmoor coal mine in New South Wales for an undisclosed sum, although the mine’s value is reckoned to be around $A500 million. Coal from the mine will support Gupta’s steelmaking operations in South Australia, with Gupta having acquired the assets of failed steelmaker Arrium, including its Whyalla steelworks, in August 2017. Tahmoor produces around two million tonnes of coal per annum, most of which is used for steelmaking.

CORPORATES
GFG ALLIANCE, GLENCORE AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, YANCOAL AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX YAL, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, COAL AND ALLIED INDUSTRIES LIMITED, LIBERTY HOUSE GROUP, SIMEC, ZEN ENERGY PTY LTD

Yancoal strengthens coal position

Original article by Tess Ingram
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 21 : 28-Sep-17

Yancoal Australia will lift its stake in the Warkworth coal project in New South Wales to 84.5 per cent. The Chinese-backed company will acquire a 28.9 per cent stake in the project from Mitsubishi Development after exercising an option. The deal requires approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board. The Warkworth joint venture is part of the Hunter Valley coal assets that Yancoal bought from Rio Tinto for $US2.69bn earlier in 2017.

CORPORATES
YANCOAL AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX YAL, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, MITSUBISHI DEVELOPMENT PTY LTD, COAL AND ALLIED INDUSTRIES LIMITED, GLENCORE PLC, POSCO, NIPPON STEEL AND SUMITOMO METAL CORPORATION, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA

Coal mine strife stokes supply fears

Original article by Mark Ludlow, Angela Macdonald-Smith
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 21-Sep-17

A Glencore spokesman rejects suggestions that protracted enterprise agreement negotiations at its Hunter Valley coal mines has affected its ability to secure new supply contracts or fulfil existing contracts. Tony Maher of the Construction, Forestry, Mining & Energy Union claims that the industrial action has had a material impact on Glencore and resulted in a 20 per cent increase in the price of coal. There are concerns that the dispute could also result in higher electricity prices and affect electricity supply.

CORPORATES
GLENCORE PLC, CONSTRUCTION, FORESTRY, MINING AND ENERGY UNION OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN ENERGY MARKET OPERATOR LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN ENERGY COUNCIL, AGL ENERGY LIMITED – ASX AGL, ORIGIN ENERGY LIMITED – ASX ORG, PACIFIC NATIONAL PTY LTD, AURIZON HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX AZJ