BEIJING, Sept 13 China's coal output fell 11
percent in August to 278 million tonnes as producers respond to
government efforts to cut overcapacity, although the pace of
monthly declines has eased.
The world's biggest energy user has deepened supply cuts in
coal and steel this year, with Beijing aiming to cut 250 million
tonnes of coal output in 2016 to slash overcapacity.
Production in the first eight months of 2.17 billion tonnes
was down 10.2 percent from the same period last year, figures
from the National Statistic Bureau showed on Tuesday.
State media said last week that China had cut capacity by
150 million tonnes by August, reaching 60 percent of it target.
However, tighter supplies and increased consumption during
summer have helped to lift coal prices. The thermal coal
benchmark price SH-QHA-TRMCOAL has rallied nearly 40 percent
from its yearly low, boosting demand for imported coal.
Coal imports in August rose to 26.59 million tonnes, up 25
percent on the same month a year ago, data from the customs
While output fell 11 percent in August, this was down from
16.6 percent drop in May, the biggest monthly fall in 2016, data
Chinese coal producers have sought the support of top policy
makers for a market stabilization plan that would add supply
once market prices hit predeterimed levels.
The plan would not affect coking coal.
China's coking coal production fell 5 percent on a year
earlier to 39.13 million tonnes last month, with output in
January to August reaching 292.38 million tonnes, down 2.7
percent, Tuesday's data showed.
($1 = 6.6796 Chinese yuan renminbi)
(Reporting By Kathy Chen; Editing by Richard Pullin)