Chinese Buyers Defer Prompt Coal Shipments


"But they told us too late; we were forced to offer cargo in the market."

Reuters reported that some Chinese buyers are seeking to defer the delivery of prompt thermal coal shipments by at least a month, citing high stockpiles at the country's ports.

As some requests to postpone shipments have come in very late, there have been a growing number of distressed South African and Colombian cargoes being offered in the market.

The sources said calls by some Chinese firms to postpone shipments have grown over the past two weeks a development that is set to hit feeble market sentiment and potentially push Asian prices lower.

A source at a European trading firm said "One of our customers told us that the loading ports are congested and they cannot take any more cargo, so they have asked to push back the delivery date by a month."

The trader said "But they told us too late, so we were forced to offer the cargo in the market and had to sell it at a discount to Richard's Bay index."

Amrita Sen a coal analyst at Barclays Capital Research said, "The August-September period has traditionally been the quietest period, so the market should start rebounding as soon are we come out of summer and the stockpile is drawn down."

She said "But domestic prices still need to go higher than international prices for the imports to start flowing in strongly."

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