NEW YORK U.S.
metallurgical coal exports will remain elevated in 2013 on
rising global steel output, Arch Coal Inc.s top executive
"Global steel production is
projected to grow in 2013, with Asia, Latin America and the
United States leading the increase," president and chief
executive officer John W. Eaves said April 23 during a
conference call to discuss the companys first-quarter
Growth in North and South
America is evident, he added. Utilization rates at U.S. steel
mills have remained in the mid- to high-70-percent range amid
strong demand from the automotive, energy and construction
"We believe that higher U.S.
steel output could translate into increased buying activity
from our met coal customers in the second half of the year,"
St. Louis-based Archs
metallurgical coal exports rose 15 percent year on year in the
first quarter, while exports to Asia are also growing.
U.S. coal exports are expected
to top 100 million tons in 2013, he noted.
"We continue to see buying
activity from our European met coal customers, particularly for
high-volatile met coal. But prices remain weak," Eaves said.
"Exports are expected to continue their upwards trend in the
future as port capacity in the U.S. is built or expanded."
The company is securing port
capacity in the United States to facilitate the movement of
metallurgical and thermal coal to the seaborne trade. In 2011,
Arch bought a 38-percent interest in Millennium Bulk
Terminals-Longview LLC in Washington state, which will enable
it to export coal from the West Coast to customers in Asia.
The company recently signed an
agreement with local labor to handle construction of the port,
A version of this article
was first published by AMM sister publication Steel