China has suspended purchases of Australian coal, with ports having instructions not to offload the commodity. These measures are part of the political relations with Canberra, which made Beijing tightly control imports of the fuel.
According to Bloomberg, Chinese power stations and steel mills have been told to immediately stop using Australian coal.
The ban is an indication of an escalation in tensions that have affected agricultural exports from China’s biggest supplier of commodities.
Namely, the fossil fuel has been a previous target for China’s ire, with what it believes to be an increasingly hostile government in Canberra, most recently in 2019 when shipments became subject to port delays.
What is more, due to these restrictions, there are reports claiming that bulkers with Australian coal have created a queue at major coal ports in north China.
However, brokers Arrow do not expect the ban to last too long.