The Medium-Term Coal Market Report 2014 provides IEA forecasts on coal markets for the coming five years as well as an in-depth analysis of recent developments in global coal demand, supply and trade. The fourth annual report shows that, while China will continue to dominate global coal markets between now and the end of the decade, India and Southeast Asia will also drive coal demand growth, although on a smaller scale.
Despite coal’s reputation as an old-fashioned, 19th-century fuel, coal markets today are very dynamic: a variety of qualities are traded, new price indexes have been created for different qualities in different regions and an increasing amount of paper trading is taking place. Meanwhile, physical flows of coal are quite sensitive to demand and price developments – not to mention policy changes throughout the world.
This report examines whether and when China’s efforts to diversify its energy mix – the so-called ABC (anything but coal) policy – will lead to peak demand for coal in the world’s biggest coal market. It also analyses how the current environment of low prices for coal will affect not just demand and investments but also the ability of coal producers to stay in business, and how new regulations in the main importing and exporting countries may affect international trade.