Friday , August 19 2022

Unique: China's Dalian port prohibits Australian coal imports, quota 2019 – source


BEIJING (Reuters) – Tolls in the northern China port of Dalian have banned imports from Australian coal and will appoint general coal imports from all sources to the end of 2019 at 12 million tonnes, officially said at Dalian Port Group at Reuters on Thursday.

FILE PHOTO: Recovery sets coal at stock ponds at the coal port in Newcastle, Australia, June 6, 2012. REUTERS / Daniel Munoz / File Photo

The unspecified ban on imports from the Australian mains supplier, which is effective since the beginning of February, comes as important ports elsewhere in China extending clearing time to Australia Australia at least 40 days .

Coal is Australia's biggest export winner and the Australian dollar came to the news, dropping more than 1 percent to $ 0.7086.

Five ports will be overseen by Dalian's customs – Dalian, Bayuquan, Panjin, Dandong and Beiliang – will not allow Australia's coal to clear by customs, says the officer. Coal imports from Russia and Indonesia will not be affected.

"I am aware of unconfirmed media reports and have not been provided and have asked a Ambassador in Beijing to explain their probity urgently," said the Minister for Trade, Simon Birmingham.

"We continue to engage closely with the industry on market access issues … China is a valuable partner in Australia and we trust our Free trade agreement commitments continue to be honored. "

Birmingham also said that Australia's coal exports to China in the fourth quarter of 2018 were higher in size and value than in the same period in 2017.

The Dalian ports said about 14 million tonnes of coal last year, and half of Australia said, said Gu Meng, an East Futures analyst.

Dalian's officer refused to be named because of the sensitivity of the matter. The same customs of Dalian or the General Administration of National Counseling did not respond immediately to a request for comments.

Dalian official said he had not had a reason for the ban on Australian imports.

However, it follows the compression of tensions between Beijing and Canberra over issues such as cyber security and China's influence over island countries in the Pacific Ocean Valley. Recently, Australia visually eliminated a visa of a prominent Chinese businessman hinders links.

He was asked if the ban was associated with bilateral tensions, Geng Shuang, a foreign ministry spokesman in China, told Thursday's reporters that the customs inspected and tested coal imports for safety and quality.

"The aims are to better protect Chinese rights and interests of Chinese importers and protect the environment," he says, adding that the move is "absolutely normal".

New Hope coal Australia rejected comments. Yancoal said the Dalian ban will not affect it as it does not ship to the port. Glencore asked inquiries to the Australian Minerals Council, who refused to comment.


Beijing has been trying to restrict imports of coal more generally to support domestic prices.

Beijing's merchant said, Dalian had cleared around 6 million tonnes of coal in January that was postponed since the end of 2018 as China slowed down customs clearance to stop imports.

Delay payments would not be included in the 12 million tonnes under the 2019 quota, he added, identifying information about practices.

Dalian treats thermal coal and coach imports but the clamp down is expected to have a greater impact on coating locks, used in steel making, or thermal coal, used to generate electricity.

Australia's clogged coal at the Jingtang port from Chinese at 200 yuan ($ 29.85) is cheaper per tonne or domestic prices, according to data and tracked by Orient Futures. The price difference for thermal coal is about the same.

"It's hard to find a place to lock Australia, because its sulfur content is very low," says a purchasing manager in a large plant in Hebei producing charcoal, used in the making process steel, from coal coking.

"The current list in ports should be sufficient to support the usage for one or two months, but it may be a problem in the long term, especially if other ports also tighten imports," he added.

He refused to be named because of the company's policy.

The most active sunlight contract for May rose more than 2 per cent in the morning on Thursday.

FILE PHOTO: Large water piles in Ulan coal mines are destroyed near the new rural Mudgee town in South Wales, Australia, March 8, 2018. REUTERS / David Gray

"(The restriction) will squeeze further profit margins in steel mills after the Fro accident has already priced iron prices," said Gu Orient Futures.

China bought 28.26 million tonnes of coal locked from Australia in 2018, accounting for 43.5 per cent of the total fuel imports in the country, which showed toll data.

Report by Meng Meng, Muyu Xu and Dominique Patton; Additional reports by Michael Martina at BEIJING, Tom Westbrook at SYDNEY and Melanie Burton at MELBOURNE; edited by Richard Pullin and Christian Schmollinger

Our Standards:Principles of the Thomson Reuters Trust.
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