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Coronado’s Curragh mine near Blackwater delivered record sales volumes for the September quarter of 3.6 million tonnes.

The result was a 20.6 per cent lift on the previous quarter in terms of sales volumes and a 24.5 per cent lift in saleable production, the company said.

“This excellent result stemmed from an improvement in mining contract performance as well as the mobilisation of additional fleets to recover lost production and overburden from the first half of the year,” chief executive officer Gerry Spindler said.

“In addition, CHPP performance improved due to better reliability, higher
throughput rates and the implementation of measures to improve yield.”

The realised metallurgical coal price for product from Curragh was $86.9 per tonne (FOB) for the September quarter, a decrease of 5.4 per cent compared to the previous quarter.

In addition to its Curragh mine in Queensland’s Bowen Basin, Coronado owns three mining complexes in the Central Appalachian region of the United States. 

Total saleable production for the September quarter across the group was 4.6 million tonnes (3.6Mt from Curragh), up 31.2 per cent on the
June quarter.

Price outlook positive as furnaces fire up again

Mr Spindler said that by the end of September, metallurgical coal index
pricing had climbed about 30 per cent off its August lows as numerous blast furnaces restarted in response to increasing demand from the automotive and construction sectors.

“The trend of blast furnaces restarts is evident in seaborne metallurgical coal-reliant markets such as India, Japan, South Korea, Brazil and Europe,” he said.

“China continued to produce steel at elevated levels, supplementing domestic met coal production with spot buying.

“In October reports emerged that Chinese state-owned enterprises have been unofficially directed to suspend imports of Australian coal. The nature and duration of the suspension is not clear at this stage.”

Mr Spindler said the impact on Coronado from a volume perspective was likely to be minimal.

“Our Australian Operations (Curragh) do not have term volume contracts with Chinese counterparts and only sell into this market sporadically,” he said.

“There are no indications that these restrictions apply to our US operations and Buchanan continued to ship cargoes to China during the quarter.”