National coal supply and demand managed to stay balanced in the first half of 2019, although situations differ from region to region, Zhang Hong, deputy secretary-general of the China National Coal Association, told a media conference on Tuesday.
A heavy-duty lorry receives a load of coal at a yard in Huaibei, East China's Anhui province. [Photo provided to China Daily]
In areas such as Yunnan and Guizhou provinces, supply failed to meet demand, while in North China and East China, coal was oversupplied, he said.
"Nationally the coal supply and demand balanced well in the first six months, but in some regions there was pressure to keep the balance," he said.
From January to May, profits in the coal industry were about 111 billion yuan ($16.14 billion), and profits of the 90 leading coal companies, which contribute about 70 percent of national output, totaled 64.08 billion yuan, according to Zhang.
Although the profit growth rate declined, profits increased, he added.
He also said Chinese coal companies are making inroads into new business sectors for high-quality development, citing examples of some companies developing high-end coal chemicals.
With the supply-side reforms deepening, innovation and reforms are injecting new development strength into the coal industry, he said.
The association told the media conference that the 2019 Summer National Coal Trade Fair will be held in Rizhao city, Shandong province, from July 23 to 24, to promote the high-quality development of the coal industry.
The fair will focus on a pricing mechanism that combines midterm and long-term contracts as well as a flexible pricing system based on benchmark prices, to help keep the stability of the coal market.
During the fair, forums will be held on coal trading markets and blockchain development, enterprise inventory management under the new situation of coal supply and demand, and application of thermal coal futures.
There will also be symposiums on coal transportation and the clean and efficient use of coal.
The fair will invite the participation of government officials and researchers in power, steel, railway and transportation industries, as well as coal production, transportation, sales, consumer and finance companies.( By Liu Zhihua)
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