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Hunter Valley on the up

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World Coal,

There have been “signs of improvement” in market conditions for New South Wales coal operators, according to a recent statement from NSW Minerals Council CEO, Stephen Galilee, with prices for thermal coal increasing over recent months.

This has provided a “welcome boost” to Hunter Valley producers, continued Galilee. “If this continues and our currently remains relatively low, like all export industries, the Hunter’s coal mining operations are well positioned to maximise any further gains after a long and difficulty period of brining production costs down.”

According to Galilee, the Hunter Valley region exported over 51 million t of coal this financial year to February – up from 48 million t over the same period last year: a 7.7% increase. Coal exports through the Port of Newcastle are also up in 2016 – and may top the 150 million t exported through the port last year.

Galilee also said that he expects the Hunter Valley to benefit from a rise in coal-fired power generation in Southeast Asia and from the roll-out of high-efficiency low-emissions coal-fired power plants, which require the high-quality coal typically produced from Hunter Valley operations.

These trends are “yet more evidence that, as the coal price cycle turns, our future prospects are positive,” Galilee concluded.

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