by VDKi

Press release 4/2022

Press release 04/2022

  • Sufficient alternative coal available on the world market to replace Russian coal
  • Full stocks at the ARA seaports
  • VdKi fears logistical problems in inland transport from the seaports to the power plants
    due to increased import volumes
  • VdKi calls for at least five-year perspective for upgrading seaport terminals and inland

"We are well prepared for the German government's announcement to run coal-fired power plants
more because of the gas shortage." This is what the Chairman of the Board of the Association of Coal
Importers, VdKi, Alexander Bethe, said at the VdKi annual meeting in Berlin. He also said that the
replacement of Russian coal due to the EU embargo was in full swing. Alexander Bethe: "The
changeover must succeed. The coal-fired power plants are under great pressure. The industry is

The world market for steam coal is being redistributed. The very high share of 50 % of Russian coal in
total imports can be replaced from other coal-exporting countries. The test programmes of the new
coal types from South Africa, Australia, USA, Colombia and Indonesia are in full swing, he said.

"However, we have problems with logistics," says Alexander Bethe. The seaports in Amsterdam,
Rotterdam and Antwerp are working at full capacity due to the high arrival of Russian coal (until the
beginning of August) plus alternatives and they are running at their limit. There are also bottlenecks
in inland logistics, the transport of coal from the seaports to the coal-fired power plants by ship or
rail, due to the high staff shortage. The VDKi calls for at least a five-year perspective for upgrading
seaport terminals and inland logistics.

The full utilisation of the coal-fired power plants, however, is not a problem. And Alexander Bethe
also does not see any drama in power generation now in summer because of the availability of
renewable energies.

"The coal-fired power plants will ensure security of supply in electricity production already in the
summer months, so that a gas reserve can be created with the available gas for the coming winter,"
says the VdKi board chairman.

Traditionally, VdKi publishes a yearbook with the most important facts, figures and data for its annual
meeting. Among other things, it says: "Never before has more coal been used to generate electricity
globally than last year. According to calculations by the International Energy Agency (IEA), more coal
could be produced and demanded worldwide in 2022 than ever before. The IEA expects records for
the coming years as well".

And Alexander Bethe adds: "We expect consumption of steam coal to exceed 30 million tonnes in
Germany this year. That would again be an increase of more than 11 % compared to the previous

More on the developments in the global coal and energy market in the current VdKi Annual Report,
available on the VdKi website (engl.version only in Sept. 2022).

Berlin, 28 June 2022

V.i.S.d.P: Verein der Kohlenimporteure e. V., Jürgen Osterhage, Managing Director

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