Australia shovels cash from coal

March 11th, 2008 - 8:07 pm ICT by admin  

Sydney, March 11 (DPA) Earnings from Australia’s coal exports are expected to double in the year from July, figures released Tuesday showed. The Australian Bureau of Agriculture and Resource Economics (ABARE) forecast coal exports worth 28 billion Australian dollars ($26 billion) next financial year from $14 billion dollars this year.

Coal, which was selling for $40 a tonne in 2002, is now fetching 300 dollars a tonne. ABARE analyst Alan Copeland said “there’s no doubt that costs of production have increased substantially but at the moment what is also increasing the price of coal is that demand is exceeding supply.”

Shipments to geographically close markets like China and India have helped Australia cement its place as the world’s top coal exporter.

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