BEIJING — Coal output in China, the world’s largest coal producer, continued to decline in the first half of 2015, but at a slightly slower pace, latest official data shows.
China’s coal production fell 5.8 percent year-on-year to 1.79 billiontons in the first six months, compared with a 6 percent decrease in the Jan-May period, according to figures from the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
The country’s coal industry has been cooling due to weaker demand in a softening economy and government measures to reduce pollution. Output fell in 2014 for the first time this century.
China’s economy expanded 7 percent year on year in the second quarter, unchanged from the first quarter but better than market expectations, fueling hopes that the economy may be stabilizing.
In the first half, China imported 99.87 million tons of coal, slumping 37.5 percent year-on-year, a slightly narrower decline than the 38.2 percent plunge in the first five months, NDRC figures show.
Coal accounts for about 66 percent of China’s primary energy consumption, 35 percentage points higher than the world average.