Indian coking coal imports moving through 12 key state-controlled ports totalled 29.3mn t in the first six months of the 2019-20 fiscal year starting 1 April, an increase of 15pc from a year earlier despite weakness in the steel sector.
Coking coal imports are on track to slightly overtake total 2018-19 volumes of 57.5mn t, according to data from the Indian Ports Association (IPA). But recent production cuts to around 80pc of capacity at many Indian mills after steel prices dropped could reduce import volumes in the months ahead.
The IPA data do not include a breakdown of which countries exported coking coal to India. Only nine of the 12 ports covered by the IPA data received coking coal shipments during April-September.
The port of Kolkata handled the largest share of coking coal imports during this period at 8.96mn t, up by 4.6pc from a year earlier. This included 7.82mn t received at Haldia and 1.14mn t arriving at the Kolkata Dock System.
Imports at Paradip were 6.38mn t in April-September, steady from the same period last year. Imports at Mormugao increased by 37pc to 3.91mn t, while volumes at the port of Visakhapatnam rose by 40pc to 4.34mn t.
April-September imports at Chidambaranar were 3.01mn t, while volumes at Mumbai and New Mangalore were 1.21mn t and 472,000t respectively.
The port of Ennore received 408,000t of coking coal during April-September, while Deendayal imported 610,000t. Chennai, Cochin and Jawaharla Nehru did not take any coking coal imports during the six-month period.