Huaneng Taicang port in eastern China's Jiangsu province is going to fine clients 1 yuan/t per day if the time period of their coal storage at port surpasses 60 days (starting from the second day after unloading is finished), the company said in a notice issued on December 10.
Effective January 1 in 2019, this move aims at hastening stock clearance at port, since some clients' long-time occupation of port spaces dragged down transfer rate. Besides, the huge volumes of coal stocks piled at port are likely to increase the risk of coal self-ignition, which might even paralyze the entire normal production at the port, the company said.
Regarding the reason behind the aggravated overtime coal storage at Huaneng Taicang port, industry insiders pointed out that the port has been a major shipment hub that connects seaborne transport with shipment along the Yangtze River and the "sea-to-river" shipment mode also has its advantages over vessel freights and shipping capacity organization.
What's more, as China deepens de-capacity reforms in coal industry, areas such as Hubei, Hunan and Jiangxi provinces are facing severe coal supply shortage, which spurred traders to ship more coal to transfer ports like Taicang and finally to end users.
Data from industry portal sxcoal.com showed that on December 13, total coal stocks at key ports alongside Yangtze River reached 6.76 million tonnes, nearly reaching their maximum handling capacity. Of that, Huaneng Taicang port boasted 770,000 tonnes of coal stocks on the same day, coming close to its storage ceiling point of about 800,000 tonnes.
While harking back to data of coal stocks at Huaneng Taicang port in 2016, it is easy to notice that in 2018, the port has been running at full handling capacity in almost a whole year.
However, the situation of Huaneng Taicang is no exception, since many ports alongside the Yangtze River are burdened with overtime coal storage. Therefore, it's only a matter of time for them to follow suit, insiders noted.
Huaneng Taicang Port Co., Ltd, located in the development zone of Taicang port in Suzhou city of Jiangsu province, was established in January 20 in 2011, and was co-invested and operated by Huaneng Power Int'l Inc. and Nanjing Port (Group) Co., Ltd.
It is positioned as a professional coal wharf to provide systematic services of coal shipment from sea to river for downstream end-users alongside Yangtze River.
Currently, its operating Phase I berthing ports have a designed throughput capacity of 27 million tonnes in total. Besides, it also has an overall designed coal storage capacity of 1.2 million tonnes.
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