The Coal Trader

BHP’s coking coal production drops 18% in Q4 2023

Steel Mint Insights

BHP Mitsubishi Alliance’s (BMA’s) coking coal (100% basis) production for Q4CY23 was recorded at 11.4 mnt, dropping by 18% as against 13.9 mnt recorded in Q4CY22.

During this period, reduced production was attributed to a substantial rise in planned maintenance activities across the asset, an extended longwall move, and geotechnical faulting affecting underground operations at Broadmeadow until early November. Additionally, production faced challenges due to an elevated prime stripping effort aimed at enhancing value chain stability. This initiative was undertaken to address depleted inventory positions resulting from prolonged weather impacts and labour constraints experienced in recent years.

In contrast to the decline in coking coal production, BHP’s thermal coal production in Q3CY23 was recorded at 3.6 mnt, up by 35% as compared to Q3CY22. BHP credited the upswing in thermal coal production to robust operational efficiency. The alleviation of labour constraints and favourable weather conditions played key roles in enhancing truck productivity, contributing to the overall increase in output.

Guidance for FY24 (July 2023- June 2024)

The revised full-year production guidance now anticipated a range between 23- 25 mnt (46 -50 mnt on a 100% basis). This adjusted guidance, excluding Blackwater and Daunia from the divestment completion date set for 2 April, 2024, represented a reduction from the previous range of 28-31 mnt (56 and 62 mnt on a 100% basis), which originally included Blackwater and Daunia.