November 29, 2021

China triples coal purchases from Russia after banning Australian imports

According to customs data, China’s coal imports surged 76% in September compared to the same period a year ago, and totaled 32.9 million tons. Much of the coal came from Russia and Indonesia.

In September, the nation purchased some 3.7 million tons of thermal coal from Russia, marking 28% growth versus the previous month and a 230% increase year-over-year.

Chinese imports of Russian coal have surged every month since May, either doubling or tripling from 2020 levels. The monthly figures to the current year also remain well above pre-pandemic levels.

Also on China unlikely to allow Australian coal imports despite mounting energy crisis – analysts

China’s economy crucially depends on coal as one of the ways to generate power. The mounting shortage of coal supplies prompted power cuts across 20 Chinese provinces earlier this year. At the same time, Beijing is seeking to drastically cut emissions, while manufacturing demand keeps growing as a result of the post-pandemic reopening of major economies.

China halted purchases of coal from Australia in late 2020, after Canberra backed a US call for an international probe into Beijing’s alleged role in the Covid-19 outbreak. Imports of thermal coal from Australia remained zero, according to the customs agency’s data.

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