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South African April thermal coal exports down 8% on month at 6.6 mil mt

London (Platts)--1 Jun 2018 648 am EDT/1048 GMT


Thermal coal exports from South Africa in April were 6.6 million mt, down 8% month on month but up 6.7% year on year, according to customs data released late Thursday.

India remained the largest importer of South African coal in April, on 3.23 million mt, up 13% month on month, but down 8% year on year.

Pakistan regained second position on 1.34 million mt, up 24% month on month and 37% year on year.

South Korea fell to third, with an import volume of 811,744 mt, down 33% month on month. However, this was over double the volume a year earlier.

The total volume exported so far in 2018 stood at 26.16 million mt, which was up 6% year on year.

The average S&P Global Platts FOB Richards Bay 5,500 kcal/kg NAR, 7-45 day assessment for April was $79.80/mt, up $4.20 month on month.

A higher FOB price was likely to have deterred buyers from South Korea, while buyers in India were likely to have been stocking up before the monsoon season which usually starts in May.

Consumers in Pakistan were also likely to have increased purchasing before Ramadan, which started on May 16.

--Piers De Wilde, piers.de.wilde@spglobal.com
--Edited by Jonathan Dart, jonathan.dart@spglobal.com

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