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Glencore coal production up 6% in 2014

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World Coal,

Glencore has released its 2014 production report showing total coal production up 6% to 146.3 million t.

Australian and South African export thermal coal production had the best year with production from both countries up 14%. Overall, Australian thermal and semi-soft coal production was 10% up on 2013 at 63.5 million t, reflecting productivity improvements, the completion of the Ravensworth North and Rolleston projects and the start of longwall operations at Ulan West.

In South Africa, thermal coal production was 46.1 million t – 6% higher overall than 2013, despite the stronger growth in export thermal coal production. Thermal coal output for the domestic market was down 1%.

The inclusion of production at the Hlagisa opencast mine for a full year in 2014, the benefits of productivity improvements at the Tweefontein underground mine and the opening of the Wonderfontein opencast mine helped to balance the closure of other higher-cost operations.

Thermal coal production was also up from Glencore’s Colombian thermal coal assets – 5% at Prodeco and 2% at Cerrejon.

In contrast, the company’s Australian metallurgical coal production dropped by 18% on the back of cost reduction initiatives resulting in mine plan/roster changes at the Newlands, Oaky Creek and Collinsville mines.

The increase in production was, however, offset by a drop in prices across the board. Prices for Australian export thermal coal down 13%, Australian metallurgical coal down 17% and South African export thermal coal down 11%.

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