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Australia forecasts record mining, energy export sales for 2023 By Reuters

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Australia forecasts record mining, energy export sales for 2023 By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Stackers/reclaimers store coal at the coal port in Newcastle on June 6, 2012. REUTERS/Daniel Munoz/File Photo

Sonali Paul

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Australia’s mining and energy export revenue is expected to rise 3% to a record $419 billion in the year to June 2023, driven by soaring coal and gas prices following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine Australian dollar ($286 billion), the government said on Monday.

Sanctions against Russia over what Moscow called a “special military operation” to disarm Ukraine have driven record prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) and coal, underpinning record earnings from Australia’s second- and third-biggest exports.

“The outlook for energy commodity prices will remain strong for longer than previously forecast as Western countries look for alternatives to Russia’s energy supply,” the industry ministry said in its quarterly report on resources and energy.

However, it said that raising global interest rates to fight inflation could hurt global economic activity and, in turn, reduce resource and energy export earnings.

In the year to June 2023, the value of LNG exports is expected to increase by 19 per cent to A$84 billion, although volumes are expected to fall by 3 per cent as production from gas fields at the North West Shelf and Darwin LNG plants decline.

Exports of thermal coal used for power generation are expected to rise 15 per cent to A$44 billion, as Australian coal is seen as the main substitute for higher-grade Russian coal, the government said, on the back of strong prices and a small increase in sales.

Revenues from metallurgical coal used in steelmaking are expected to rise 3% to A$60 billion.

“With energy inventories in the northern hemisphere well below normal, any supply disruption will lead to further price spikes,” the report said, noting that coal production could fall as heavy rains hit eastern Australia.

In the year to June 2023, the value of iron ore, Australia’s largest export earner, is expected to fall by 12% to A$116 billion, with the average price dropping from US$119 to US$99 a tonne, offsetting losses in LNG and coal. income.

(1 USD = 1.4676 AUD)

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