09-06-2018

April US coal exports surge to highest monthly total since 2013

US coal exports totaled 10.1 million mt in April, the highest monthly total since March 2013, according to new US Census data.

The monthly total was up 17.7% from March and 53.3% higher than the year-ago month.

Driven by strong seaborne prices, end-users are increasingly choosing to source metallurgical and thermal coal from the US. A possible petcoke ban in India also has led to a dramatic increase in US bituminous coal imports.

Met coal exports in April totaled 5.3 million mt, up 18.5% from the prior month and 27.7% from the year-ago month. It also was highest monthly total since March 2014.

Top met coal export destinations in April were Brazil, at 680,299 mt compared with 599,427 mt in the year-ago month; India, at 579,740 mt compared with 327,054 mt last year; and Ukraine, at 500,053 mt compared with 129,998 mt last year.

Met coal exports to China in April totaled 311,700 mt, compared with 341,964 mt last year.

Bituminous coal exports in January totaled 3.99 million mt, up 14.1% from March and 156.4% from last year.

Top bituminous coal export destinations in April were India, at 821,310 mt compared with 584,885 mt last year; the Netherlands, at 586,546 mt compared with 313,508 mt last year; and Egypt, at 478,208 mt compared with 107,295 mt a year ago.

Subbituminous coal exports totaled 650,979 mt in April, up 22.5% from last month, but down 13.8% from the year-ago month.

The top importer of US subbituminous coal in April was South Korea, at 467,263 mt compared with 421,355 mt last year, followed by Mexico, at 181,570 mt compared with 226,179 mt last year.

Source: Platts

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