A map of Yancoal’s Mount Thorley Warkworth operation. Image: Yancoal.




YANCOAL’S Australian thermal coal sales surged 123 per cent year-on-year in the March quarter, as it enjoys its second quarter of full output from the newly purchased $US2.9 billion Coal and Allied assets.


Yancoal, now Australia’s largest independent coal producer, saw equity share of thermal coal sales from its Australian mines jump to 6.97mt from 3.12mt in the year ago period, but still down by 14 per cent from the December quarter.

Its equity share of metallurgical coal sales volumes of 2.25mt was a 19 per cent increase on the year prior.

In NSW, Moolarben saleable coal production was up 53 per cent on the year-ago period to 4.68mt, with preparations now underway to commence the first scheduled longwall move around the middle of the year.

Mount Thorley Warkworth maintained strong production and throughput rates throughout the reporting period, to achieve saleable coal production of 3.05mt.

Hunter Valley Operations achieved 2.89mt saleable coal for the reporting period, with the operation preparing for the integration of the proposed joint venture with Glencore, expected to be completed in the first half of the year.

Yancoal also reported the Stratford Duralie operation would commence development of the 1.2 million tonnes per annum Stratford extension project in April.

Approved by the NSW Planning and Assessment Commission in June 2015, the Stratford extension application could extract up to 21.5 million tonnes of ROM coal over 11 years at a rate of up to 2.6mtpa.

At the time, Yancoal stated that coal prices would need to rise before it considered going ahead with the expansion.

The 2015 PAC approval found the project would create around 500 direct and indirect jobs, and generate around $62 million in mining royalties.

In Queensland, the Yarrabee open cut achieved saleable coal production of 0.36mt, down 47 per cent on the year prior, with the operation impacted by poor weather conditions.

The Middlemount joint venture also overcame wet weather impacts during the reporting period to achieve saleable coal production of 1.0mt, up 13 per cent on the previous year.