Coal demand slows at Newcastle Ports

Shipping queues have eased at Newcastle, with further shrinkage expected in the coming weeks.

Port Waratah was down to a shipping queue of 13 last night, down from a 23-week high of 22 ships last week, according to the Hunter Valley Coal Chain Co-ordinator.

The Port Waratah shipping queue, which serves as an indicator of export demand, is expected to drop to less than 10 ships at the end of the month.

Port Waratah Coal Services loaded 2.25 million tonnes into 29 ships last week, up from 2.11 million tonnes in the week ending 31 January.

Planned rates for coal delivery were down 627kt, with inbound performance down 607kt on the Declared Inbound Performance, resulting in total losses for the week at 8.3 per cent compared to the expected 7.4 per cent.

Platts reported that rail activities would be suspended for planned maintenance, scheduled over three days from Feb 23.

Declared Inbound Throughput is expected to drop after that date, with 7.6 million tonnes expected for loading in February, to rise again in March to 9.2 million tonnes.

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