China's raw coal output in May fell slightly by 0.1% compared with the same month last year, official statistics showed.
The world's top coal producer churned out 318.84 million tonnes of coal last month, down 1% from a month earlier, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed on June 15.
Daily production averaged 10.29 million tonnes in May, a slightly fall of 450,000 tonnes compared with April.
From January to May, the country produced 1.47 billion tonnes of raw coal, a 0.9% rise year on year. The growth slowed from a 1.3% rise during January-April period.
China had its annually national political gatherings – "The Two Sessions" – in late May, which was postponed from the usual March due to the Covid-19 outbreak. For safety concerns, local governments strengthened inspections at coal mines during the period.
Also, Inner Mongolia, one of three largest coal production provinces in the country, has been conducting an across-the-aboard investigation against corruption behaviors in the past decades in the local coal sector, which resulted in operation suspension at some mines.
Currently, coal prices have been on the rise for more than a week and about to exceed the "green zone" of 500-570 yuan/t set by the National Development and Reform Commission, mainly due to insufficient supply of premium types. To this end, a rise in production this month to stabilize the market cannot be ruled out.
(Writing by Alex Guo Editing by Jessie Jia)
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