Ukraine`s largest privately owned, vertically integrated energy company DTEK, owned by Rinat Akhmetov, has contracted the purchase of 50,000 tonnes of anthracite coal from South Africa and 70,000 tonnes of gas coal from Poland, as part of measures to prepare for the heating season in Ukraine, head of state company Ukrenergo Vsevolod Kovalchuk told reporters last week.
”We had a meeting in the Cabinet of Ministers devoted to the preparations for winter. DTEK announced that it had already contracted 70,000 tonnes of gas coal from Poland and 50,000 tonnes of anthracite coal from South Africa,” Kovalchuk said.
At this, he stressed that all generating companies, both private and state-run, should have dealt with coal import issues in spring, rather than in late summer – early autumn.
As UNIAN reported earlier, Ukraine began to experience an acute shortage of coal in the summer of 2014, when, as a result of hostilities, the government completely lost control of part of Donbas, where the majority of the coal mines were located.
In January 2015, Ukraine reduced coal production by half to 2.5 million tonnes as compared to the previous year amid continued fighting in Donbas. Kyiv-based authorities decided to start coal imports from Australia, South Africa and Russia.
In 2015, Ukraine imported $1.632 billion worth of bituminous and anthracite coal. The largest coal shipments last year arrived from Russia, the United States, and Kazakhstan. Coal imports from Russia were estimated at $771.3 million (47.2% of expenditures on solid fuel), shipments from the United States amounted to $400 million (24.5%), while shipments from Kazakhstan were worth $123.7 million (7.6%). Coal imports from other countries were estimated at $338.2 million.