Coal India's October Output, Shipments Rise to Highest for Month

  • Supplies rising on back of demand from power stations
  • April-Oct. shipment up 8.6%, while output rises 1.6%

Coal India Ltd.’s shipments and output in October rose to the highest for the month in at least five years, as the state-run miner sought to replenish power plant inventories.

  • Shipments jumped to 48.3 million metric tons, up 12 percent from a year ago, according to Bloomberg calculations based on a stock exchange filing on Thursday. Output rose 6 percent to 46.14 million tons. Production and shipment were the highest in the year that began April 1 and a record for the month of October, according to data going back to 2013.  
  • Output for the seven months ended Oct. 31 rose 1.6 percent to 278 million tons, missing the aim of 292.8 million tons. Shipments for the period rose 8.6 percent to 317.30 million tons, falling short of the target of 327.8 million. The company lowered its output and shipment target to 600 million tons each earlier this year, citing lack of demand.

Output has started climbing since August to meet a sudden surge in demand from power stations, caused by a drop in electricity generation from other sources. The demand spike coincided with the monsoon season, when typically rainwater floods mines and hampers the movement of coal trucks.

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The demand for coal is likely to increase as the government’s plans to boost the economy will lead to higher electricity consumption, according to Rupesh Sankhe, an analyst at Reliance Securities Ltd.

“Government steps to recapitalize banks, invest in infrastructure projects like road and railways, and supply electricity to every home can keep the coal demand high,” Sankhe said. “There are several users of coal other than the power plants, which the company can tap for growth in shipments.”

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