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China’s benchmark power coal price ends decline

Updated: Feb 4,2018 8:11 AM     Xinhua

BEIJING — China’s benchmark power coal price ended declines during the past week due to rising consumption from coal-fired power plants.

The Bohai-Rim Steam-Coal Price Index, a gauge of coal prices in northern China’s major ports published weekly, stayed flat with a week ago at 577 yuan ($91.75) per tonne, according to Qinhuangdao Ocean Shipping Coal Trading Market Co Ltd.

Analysts said falling temperatures boosted electricity demand in coastal areas. Daily coal use of major power stations has hit a new high since the beginning of the year, while stockpiles continued to shrink.

The coal price had been falling as the government rolled out policies to ensure supply until surging seasonal demand stopped the losing streak.

Pressure from the coal shortage is likely to continue as the upcoming Spring Festival holiday will curb transport efficiency, analysts said.

China is in the middle of capacity cuts in the coal and steel sectors. Last year’s annual targets to slash steel capacity by around 50 million tonnes and coal by at least 150 million tonnes were fulfilled in August and October, respectively.