According to Bloomberg, Yang Xianfeng president of the China Coal Transportation & Distribution Association reported that imports are important to supplement domestic miners and maintain balanced trade with exporting nations.
This year, China expects that they may reach the 300 million tonnes due to the fact that cargoes in the first 10 months of the year reached the 276 million tonnes, in part due to cheaper overseas fuel.
During an event at the Shanghai import expo, he also stated that China must maintain a certain level of imports, but not too big. He furthermore continued that the target is about to make sure that both domestic supply-demand balance, and also balanced global trade.
In order to help local miners, China tries to manage imports, by reducing the amount of competing coal. For the records, in 2018 China's coal output was about 281 million tons, with cargoes shut out almost entirely in the last weeks of the year. Yet, according to Yang, the short term slide in the coal market isn’t going to affect the overall stable trend.
Indonesia, one of the top China's supplier, reported lower prices with the expects of coal output to over 500 million tons for the 2019, passing the upper limit of 489 million tons.
Accordingly, Hendra Sinadia, executive director of the Indonesia Coal Mining Association reported to the conference that this will put pressure on an already oversupplied seaborne market and is concerning the government in Jakarta.
To conclude, Chinese traders restarted next year's imports need, by coming in an agreement for about 82 million tons of coal from foreign suppliers such as BHP Group and Yancoal Australia Ltd.