China’s coal imports in July rise 24% to meet peak load

A bulldozer moves piles of coal at the port of Lianyungang on July 29, 2022. China’s coal imports increased in July, according to customs data.

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China’s July coal imports rose nearly a quarter from June to the highest levels so far this year as power producers increased purchases to meet peak demand electricity in the summer.

Fuel arrivals totaled 23.52 million tonnes last month, up sharply from 18.98 million tonnes in June, but down 22% from a year earlier, data showed on Sunday. by the General Customs Administration.

In the first seven months of the year, China imported 138.52 million tons of coal, down 18 percent from the same period of 2021.

Daily coal consumption in major coastal regions hovered around 2.2 million tonnes at the end of July, a level similar to last year, according to Shanghai Shipping Exchange. A spike in temperature across the country has increased the use of air conditioning.

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The government has pledged to avoid power rationing this year and has urged coal-fired power generators, which supply around 60% of the country’s electricity, to increase coal stocks.

Data tracked by Refinitiv showed China’s maritime coal imports from Russia hit a record high of 7.38 million tonnes in July.

However, analysts expect coal demand to soon start to subside as temperatures moderate, while industrial activity remains sluggish amid Covid-19 restrictions.

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