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Coal stars in positive Australian mining outlook

World Coal,

The Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (BREE) has confirmed the ongoing strength of the Australian minerals sector and its importance to the economy.

In its bi-annual overview of resources and energy projects, BREE identifies 153 mining and related infrastructure projects under feasibility examination with a combined value of about AU$ 146 billion.

Of these projects, 50 are new coal developments under feasibility examination with a combined value of AU$ 54 billion. There are more coal projects at the feasibility stage than any other commodity.

The report demonstrates how vital and indispensable coal is as a source of economic activity in Australia.

It also strongly suggests that the coal sector will continue as an integral part of the Australian economy for years to come.

With Australia accounting for an estimated 60% of world trade in metallurgical coal and 20% in thermal coal, the coal industry underpins the country’s export income. Coal exports are worth about AU$ 50 million /year to the country, providing a reliable and affordable electricity supply.

The BREE report shows that, in the year leading to October 2013, there has been a production capacity increase of 13 million t of coal, with a further 60 million t under construction.

“While the capital inflows associated with investment phase of the mining boom have brought substantial economic benefits to Australia they are realised over a relatively short period of time. The economic benefits of the production phase may not be as large as the investment phase per year, but they are expected to last for considerably longer,” the report said.

Adapted from press release by Sam Dodson

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