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Leading Vietnam coal port resumes operation

Leading Vietnam coal port resumes operation

Hanoi: Vietnam's main coal port, Cam Pha has resumed about 70% of loading capacity, after its loaders collapsed during a storm last week, The Economic Times reports state coal monopoly Vinacomin as having said yesterday. "Repair is under way and the port would resume full operation in a month," a Vinacomin spokesman said.

The port in Quang Ninh, Vietnam's northern coal hub, which handles most of the country's coal exports to China and Japan, can now load about 20,000 tonnes of coal daily as compared to around 30,000 to 40,000 tonnes per day before Aug 6 when three of its four loaders collapsed, a port official said.

About two thirds of the fuel shipped via Cam Pha goes to China and the rest goes to Japan and other countries, he said. Last month Vietnam estimated its coal exports for the first six months of 2008 dropped 22.7% to 14.47m tonnes as compared to 2007, but revenues jumped 38.4% to $811m, boosted by high world prices.

The Southeast Asian country is struggling to meet soaring energy demand at home and plans to slash coal exports this year by more than 32% to about 22m tonnes to save more for new power plants, the Industry and Trade Ministry has said.

Vinacomin has forecast coal output could rise to 43m tonnes in 2008, beating previous industry projections of 40m tonnes.  [12/08/08]