Chinese coal imports from Mozambique reached a record high this year, as the Asian country boosts buys from new sources to deal with a global coal shortage.
According to traders, to tackle the coal supply shortage, China has expanded its coal trade with existing trading partners, like Kazakhstan Myanmar and Colombia, and started importing from non-traditional markets, like South Africa and Mozambique.
China’s coal trade with Mozambique was active between 2011-14, but disappeared until February this year. Monthly imports from the African nation hit 174,000 tonnes in April, the highest level on record, according figures quoted by SCMP.
China’s coal trade with South Africa, obliterated after coal from the African nation was prohibited because it was found to contain restricted trace elements like fluorine, was revived at the start of the year and China’s imports reached more than 1 million tonnes in April from zero last December.
China’s coal imports from South Africa – mostly thermal coal for power generation – remained buoyed at nearly 500,000 tonnes last month, Chinese customs data shows.
Coal shortage is one of the root causes identified by experts for China’s power crisis, that has led to lectricity rationing in more than half of China’s provinces, as local governments race to meet Beijing’s carbon emissions targets for the year.