Global Coal Market Price Essay

1522 words - 7 pages

The Coal Resource: A Comprehensive Overview of Coal

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SECTION THREE

THE GLOBAL COAL MARKET
>> Coal is a global industry, with coal mined commercially in over 50 countries and coal used in over 70. >>

Major Coal Importers, 2003 (Mt) Japan Republic of Korea Chinese Taipei Germany UK Russia India USA Netherlands Spain 162 72 54 35 32 24 24 23 22 22

The world currently consumes over 4050 Mt of coal. Coal is used by a variety of sectors – including power generation, iron and steel production, cement manufacturing and as a liquid fuel. The majority of coal is either utilised in power generation – steam coal or lignite – or iron and steel production – coking coal.

Coal ...view middle of the document...

Coal production has grown fastest in Asia, while Europe has actually seen a decline in production.
The largest coal producing countries are not confined to one region – the top five producers are China, the USA, India, Australia and South Africa. Much of global coal production is used in the country in which it was produced, only around 18% of hard coal production is destined for the international coal market. Global coal production is expected to reach 7 billion tonnes in 2030 – with China accounting for around half the increase over this period. Steam coal production is projected to have reached around 5.2 billion tonnes; coking coal 624 million tonnes; and brown coal 1.2 billion tonnes.

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World Coal Institute

Top Ten Coal Producing Countries Worldwide, 2003 (Mt)
Source: IEA 2004

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USA and India, for example, also import quantities of coal for quality and logistical reasons. Coal will continue to play a key role in the world’s energy mix, with demand in certain regions set to grow rapidly. Growth in both the steam and coking coal markets will be strongest in developing Asian countries, where demand for electricity and the need for steel in construction, car production, and demands for household appliances will increase as incomes rise.

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Top Ten Coal Consumers Worldwide, 2003 (Mt)
Source: IEA 2004

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Coal Trade Coal is traded all over the world, with coal shipped huge distances by sea to reach markets.
Over the last twenty years, seaborne trade in steam coal has increased on average by about 8% each year, while seaborne coking coal trade has increased by 2% a year. Overall international trade in coal reached 718 Mt in 2003; while this is a significant amount of coal it still only accounts for about 18% of total coal consumed. Transportation costs account for a large share of the total delivered price of coal, therefore international trade in steam coal is effectively divided into two regional markets – the Atlantic and the Pacific. The Atlantic market is made up of importing countries in Western Europe, notably the UK, Germany and Spain. The Pacific market consists of developing and OECD Asian importers, notably Japan, Korea and Chinese Taipei. The Pacific market currently accounts for about 60% of world steam coal trade. Markets tend to overlap when coal prices are high and supplies plentiful. South Africa is a natural point of convergence between the two markets.

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Definition OECD is the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. It is a group of 30 member countries who are committed to democratic government and the market economy.

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The Coal Resource: A Comprehensive...

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