Energy-starved China will boost coal output by 400 million tonnes a year by 2010 by streamlining the industry and opening a string of new “super” pits, state media reported today. Widespread closures and mergers will leave fewer than 20 firms, including six to eight new “super coal production enterprises’ with a yield of 100 million tonnes each, accounting for more than 50 per cent of the country’s entire output by 2010, Xinhua news agency said.
China reported a total coal output of more than 2.3 billion tonnes of coal last year. Small mines that are illegal or inefficient and have given the industry its appalling safety record are already being weeded out, Wang Xianzheng, deputy director of the State Administration of Work Safety , was quoted as saying. [Full Text]