Moscow [Russia], May 12 (ANI): The shipments of Russian metallurgical coal to China increased to nearly 49 per cent in April from a month earlier, Sputnik reported, citing the commodity analytics firm Kpler.
Russia has been diverting coal shipments eastward as European markets continue to close over the fighting in neighboring Ukraine.
Moreover, the cargo-tracking data shows that China imported 1.37 million tonnes of Russian coking coal last month, up from 922,000 tonnes in March and 750,000 tonnes in April last year, the Brussels-based company stated.
Ilya Makarov, the director of the corporate ratings at Moscow-based rating agency ACRA, however, warned that the Asian shift was straining Russia's rail freight capabilities and risked pushing down coal prices in the Asian market.
The lure of cheaper energy, in the form of gas, coal, and oil, and low-cost wheat from Russia far outweighs the fear of sanctions as China has decided to make deals with Russia as long as it can.
China has taken full advantage of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, grabbing the huge discount offered by Moscow on coking coal which is used in steel mills, as Japan and the European Union have curbed imports leaving the Russian companies scrambling for buyers. (ANI)