IEA Coal Demand Forecasts
In its annual Coal 2021 report, the International Energy Agency (IEA) projected global coking coal imports to reach 346 Mt in 2024, up from a forecast of 312 Mt in 2021. India is expected to see the largest gains, climbing 13 Mt to 74 Mt in 2024, while shipments to China are expected to rise by 10 Mt to 63 Mt. Meanwhile, imports by Europe (+4 Mt to 62 Mt), Japan (+2 Mt to 48 Mt) and South Korea (+1 Mt to 42 Mt) are all projected to post comparatively modest increases over 2021-2024.
By contrast, global steam coal imports (including lignite) are forecast to decline by 69 Mt from 2021 to 990 Mt in 2024. The fall is expected to be led by a 61 Mt drop in Chinese imports to 199 Mt, while the IEA also forecasts a retreat in shipments into Europe (-32 Mt to 76 Mt) and Japan (-14 Mt to 123 Mt). Projections for increased import demand from Southeast Asia (+26 Mt to 154 Mt) and India (+13 Mt to 163 Mt) are not enough to offset losses in the rest of the world.