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Minergy CEO:
“Coal is here to stay”

"Coal is here to stay" is the message from Andre Boje, the CEO of Minergy Limited – a Botswana-based emerging coal mining company.

Coal currently fuels 41% of the world's electricity with usage expected to remain at similar levels over the next 30 years, and with coal prices on the up and a high demand for coal in southern Africa, Boje is passionate in ensuring coal is not overlooked in the ever increasing competitive energies market.

Boje said: “Coal is here to stay for the foreseeable future. There is high demand for coal in southern Africa, and it is likely to remain the most affordable fuel for power generation in many developing and industrialised countries for decades.

“Years of little or no investment in new coal projects means there is limited supply, yet demand for coal in the southern African region continues to increase, with prices escalating on an ongoing basis. The API4 index price for seaborne thermal coal for export has risen considerably, currently trading at US$97 per ton, an increase of 98% from 2016. Although prices are expected to steady to around US$80 per ton in the next five years, there are significant growth and investment opportunities in the industry.”

In December 2017, the International Energy Agency forecast that world demand for coal would reach 5.5 billion tons in 2022, up from 5.3 billion tons in 2016, and has concluded that while renewable energy and nuclear power are the world's fastest growing forms of energy, fossil fuels are expected to continue to meet much of the world's energy demand through to 2040.

Boje also stated that he is not opposed to renewables, and with cleaner coal technologies, such as high efficiency low emission (HELE) coal technologies that are proven to reduce CO2 emissions from coal by up to 35%, there is evidence to suggest that coal will continue to be one of the main energy providers, particularly in developing nations.

“The coal industry takes its impact on the environment seriously and has developed, and continues to develop, highly effective technologies to tackle environmental challenges, including the release of pollutants. Producing energy invariably leads to some degree of environmental impact, and it is important that we balance concerns for the environment with priorities for economic and social development.

“Putting that into context, it is alarming to consider that 620 million Africans still rely on firewood, kerosene and charcoal for cooking, heating and lighting, which consequently causes 600 000 premature deaths annually; that's 1634 deaths per day as a result of illnesses caused by indoor air pollution. The high usage of firewood and charcoal is also leading to alarming deforestation - Zambia alone loses 250 000 hectares annually.

“Off and on grid renewable energy sources cannot support base load requirements and have been proven unreliable for supply in southern Africa; nuclear energy is prohibitively capital intensive, in Africa significant gas resources are limited to Nigeria and Mozambique, and hydro power is limited by global water shortage.

“I recognise there is a need for renewable energy and investment in this industry, however its success is limited to economically developed countries that can support its infrastructure. Developing nations, such as those in Africa are unable to rely on renewable energy sources. I believe there is space and demand within the industry for both coal and renewable energy sources, each serving different markets.”

Minergy plans to list on AIM in the latter part of 2018, as it looks to raise long-term equity finance to fund future growth and enable Minergy to reach its full potential with the Masama Coal Project - a 390Mt opencast, low strip ratio mine in the Mmambula Coalfield, in south west Botswana, 50km north of Gaborone.

Botswana is typically known for its mineral mining industries, but it also has a significant role to play in the seaborne thermal coal market, due to its large, untapped coal resources. Its close proximity to the South African coal export infrastructure, and the high demand for coal in southern Africa, means Minergy is seeking to meet this demand and gain traction in the market.

Botswana is not the only country that is seeing the resurgence of coal mining. There are 1600 coal fired power plants either being planned or under construction in 62 countries which will, without older plant decommissioning, expand the world's coal-fired capacity by 43%. 100 of these coal fired power plants are in various stages of planning and construction in 11 African countries (excluding South Africa). Once in production, these plants will have a combined capacity of 42.5 GW - eight times the region's current capacity.

Boje concluded: “As a low cost energy producer, coal, despite its detractors and environmental concerns, makes for an attractive short-to-medium investment case. The availability of coal in developing countries is vital to achieving high rates of electrification, and with 92% of South Africa relying on coal for its electricity supply, the Masama Coal Project represents an exciting opportunity for the development of small to medium scale coal mines in Botswana.”

Minergy owns 100% of the Masama Coal Project with the potential to produce 2.4Mtpa (metric tons per annum) of coal within a year of opening. The company will focus on delivering high quality coal to the regional market, including Botswana and South Africa, and entering the international seaborne thermal coal export market.

Published by World Coal, 22 February 2018

This month's top international coal headlines

  • The Economic Impacts of Climate Change — Review of Environmental Economics and Policy
  • Fewer And Fewer People Die From Climate-Related Natural Disasters
    — Bjorn Lomborg
  • South African, Colombia coals compete for weak Indian spot demand
    — Platts CTI
  • Coal is here to stay! Botswana to drive the future of coal power demand
    — CNBC
  • China is massively betting on coal outside its borders — even as investment falls globally — CNBC
  • Abandon coal and the lights go out — The Daily Telegraph
  • IMO 2020, a shipping regulation that may reshape global coal trade — Platts
  • Atlantic thermal coal markets concentrate on Richards Bay — Platts CTI
  • Mid-CV South African coal prices buoyed by tight supply — Platts CTI
  • Richards Bay mid-CV supply tightness driving up price — Platts CTI
  • South Africa’s Feb thermal coal exports rise 1% to 6.2Mt — Platts CTI

2018 archive

March 2018
  • Eskom reverts to cost plus for coal purchase — Miningmx
  • Vessel queue at Richards Bay Coal Terminal eases on week — Platts CTI
  • Limited offers for FOB Richards Bay coals — Platts CTI
  • SA coal mining set for growth — Mining Weekly
  • South African coal preferred choice for South Asia market — Platts CTI
  • 3% global power demand gain met by renewables, coal in 2017: IEA
    — Platts CTI
  • Deflated sentiment in CIF ARA spot market as demand wanes — Platts CTI
  • WCA responds to State of global coal fleet report — World Coal
  • Vessel queue at Richards Bay Coal Terminal up on week — Platts CTI
  • Coal ahead of gas in UK, German power markets — Platts CTI
  • China thermal coal prices stabilise — Platts CTI
  • UK GAS-Prices edge lower on weaker demand; softer coal, power markets
    — Reuters
  • US coal interest wanes on lower South African prices — Platts CTI
  • China approves three coal mine projects — China Coal Daily
  • Coal’s future in Asia is far from bleak — S&P Global Platts
  • South African coal favoured for South Asian import market — Platts CTI
  • The world cannot keep ignoring the Asian coal story — World Coal
  • Australia’s Universal Coal acquires SA North Block Complex, eyes exports
    — Platts CTI
  • Green Mythology and the High Price of European Electricity — Energy Matters
  • The World Is Mostly Run On Fossil Fuels — Bjorn Lomborg
  • ICE Feb thermal coal derivatives trade marginally up from Jan at 143Mt
    — Platts CTI
  • China thermal coal prices retreat further — Platts
  • South African coal volatility — Platts CTI
  • Atlantic thermal coal derivatives trading down 10.4% on year in Feb: LEBA
    — Platts CTI
  • China to cut 30 Mtpa steel capacity, 150 Mtpa coal capacity in 2018
  • Industrialisation and prosperity to drive global energy demand — World Coal
  • The future of “dirty” coal in South Africa vs reliable renewable energy sources — Mining Review
  • Anglo American completes sale of Eskom-tied thermal coal ops
    — Independent Online
  • Anglo American concludes sale of three coal mines in South Africa
  • Impossible for Gupta-owned Optimum Coal to do business — Miningmx
February 2018
  • Vessel queue at Richards Bay Coal Terminal eases on week: cFlow — Platts CTI
  • South Africa’s January thermal coal exports fall to 6.16Mt — Platts CTI
  • South African price volatility keeping buyers at bay — Platts CTI
  • Underinvestment in thermal coal may boost short term prices — SACR
  • Minergy CEO: “Coal is here to stay” — World Coal
  • Asian coal demand to offset EU and US decline — Nikkei Asian Review
  • Trump proposes FY19 budget proposal for Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement — World Coal
  • A nuclear deal with Moscow would not only squander billions, but would compromise SA's sovereignty — Daily Maverick
  • Energy Access Outlook 2017 — IEA
  • Industrial action at Optimum coal mine in South Africa — Platts CTI
  • Richards Bay stocks plentiful despite South Africa coal mine strike: source
    — Platts CTI
  • CIF ARA market pushes higher despite little March interest — Platts CTI
  • Strong South African coal bids boost markets amid tight supply — Platts CTI
  • RB prices likely to edge up on limited supplies, Newcastle — SACR
  • South African coal sales climb to record $10.3bn in 2017 — MCR
  • New SA president likely to address mining charter issues
    — McCloskey Coal Report
  • Leon expects mining industry to have a future under Ramaphosa’s Presidency — Mining Weekly
  • Arbitrage opportunity for South African coal to India — Platts CTI
  • Vessel queue at Richards Bay Coal Terminal rises to 25: cFlow — Platts CTI
  • FOB prices push CIF ARA market higher — Platts CTI
  • Global thermal coal demand to outstrip supply, grow by 5% in 2018: Noble
    — Platts CTI
  • Atlantic thermal coal derivatives trading rises 55.4% on month to 70.8Mt: LEBA — Platts CTI
  • CIF ARA spot market loses ground, futures recover — Platts CTI
  • The Future of Coal in South Africa — Mining Journal Africa
  • Indian demand for South African coal rises: sources — Platts CTI
  • South African mining industry makes compelling case for protection of coal
    — African News Agency
  • Vessel queue at Richards Bay Coal Terminal up one to 15: cFlow — Platts CTI
  • Solar And Wind Are Taking Over The World — Bjørn Lomborg
  • Growing hope Ramaphosa will fix S. Africa’s mining charter problem
    — McCloskey Coal Report
  • Eskom struggles to compete for coal supplies amid export rally
    — McCloskey Coal Report
  • South Africa to benefit from coal demand surge in India, Pakistan
    — McCloskey Coal Report
January 2018
  • Is Global Warming Making Us Hungrier? — Bjørn Lomborg
  • Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT) exported a record 76.47Mt of coal in 2017 — Platts CTI
  • Anglo American continues exit from South African coalWorld Coal — Platts CTI
  • RBCT reports record high 2017 coal export volumes — Platts CTI
  • Richards Bay terminal reports record high 2017 coal export volumes at 76.5Mt — Platts CTI
  • Cyril Ramaphosa to tackle Mining Charter impasse — BusinessLIVE
  • Anglo American 2017 coal production falls 6% on year to 81.82Mt — Platts CTI
  • Vessel queue at Richards Bay Coal Terminal drops to 16: cFlow — Platts CTI
  • CIF ARA spot coal price retraces on lower bids, offers — Platts CTI
  • Indonesian miners aim for higher production — Platts CTI
  • India’s electricity generation — World Coal Association
  • India's self-sufficiency goals, renewable energy, overcapacity, and railway system — Coaltrans
  • South32 flags downside risk over weaker domestic demand
  • Eskom’s financial woes threaten to push South Africa off ‘coal cliff’
  • RBCT coal vessel queues total 22, up five from last week: cFlow — Platts CTI
  • Roadmap to nowhere: the myth of powering the nation 100% with renewable energy — Energy Post
  • CIF ARA coal markets stagnant despite early morning deal — Platts CTI
  • China buying, India struggling — Platts CTI
  • Komipo buys 130,000 mt of South African coal — Platts CTI
  • Atlantic thermal coal trading limited as prices drop — Platts CTI
  • Coal prices face moderate correction — Platts CTI
  • South African coal competitively priced to India — Platts CTI
  • Slack demand keeps CIF ARA coal trading light — Platts CTI
  • Steam coal prices look overcooked — McCloskey Coal Report
  • Indian buyers resist rising South African market — Platts CTI
  • Global primary energy demand — World Coal
  • South African, US coals flow to India — Platts CTI
  • Vessels delayed at Richards Bay Coal Terminal: cFlow — Platts CTI
  • Steam Coal Outlook 2018 & Beyond — Coal Asia

2017 archive








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