Coal storage at Indian power utilities is on the way to recover, as coal miners continued to raise supplies to utilities amid clearly falling power demand from previous peaks.
As of November 22, coal stocks at 136 plants having linkage contracts increased to 16.22 million tonnes, reaching a level enough for 9 days of use for the first time and a new high since August 20 this year.
Inventory once had fallen to a mere four days of usage in mid-October as post-pandemic economy spurred power consumption and due to inadequate coal stockpiles, at a time when over 2/3 utilities' stocks were in critical or super critical shortage.
The quick rebound in coal stocks mainly due to government's multiple measures including appeal on production rises, supply priority to utilities and coal transshipment from non-power industries. As of November 22, daily coal shipment to power plants reached 1.78 million tonnes, higher than 1.63 million tonnes of daily demand.
Besides, the build-up in inventory level was further aided by a slowdown in electricity consumption with the onset of winter. Data showed the daily power consumption has decreased 13% month on month to 3.32 billion units in the first 23 days of November.
The present inventory levels are still far lower than the normal stocks of 14 days which are required to be maintained at power plants. Till then, coal supplies for the non-power sector are expected to remain curtailed.
(Writing by Rebecca Liu Editing by Tammy Yang)
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