Energy demand boosts Indonesian coal mines

Bayan Resources yesterday highlighted the interest investors are taking in Indonesia, the world’s largest thermal coal exporter, when it announced plans to raise up to $695m by floating 25 per cent of its shares on the country’s stock exchange next month.

With countries including China looking for alternatives to oil, global demand for Indonesia’s largely low-grade thermal coal, used mostly in power stations, is surging, helped by the fact that suppliers, including Australia and South Africa, can no longer meet demand.
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Upgrading LRC (Low Rank Coal) looking attractive

With some thermal coal prices soaring to over US$150/t and declining supplies of high- quality coal worldwide, upgrading of Indonesia’s low rank coal (LRC) is becoming an increasingly attractive option.
Long regarded as uneconomical to mine because of its high moisture and low heat value, LRC now is being seen more as an alternative fuel to bituminous coal, principally for power generation. At an estimated 60.8Bt, LRC – coal with a calorific value below 5,100kcal/kg – accounts for some two-thirds of Indonesia’s total coal resources.
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