SA may lose coal export industry to Eskom as balance sheet for new projects dries up

WHO will finance South Africa’s long-term coal mining sector, assuming the fuel is even needed 15 to 20 years from now?

That’s the logical question coming out of Glencore’s announcement earlier this month that it would harvest the remainder of its coal resources in the country, a development which represents the third major ‘mining house’ to call time on the sector.

South32 is selling its thermal coal mines to Seriti Resources, an unlisted producer and developer which had two years earlier bought the domestic coal mines of Anglo American.

Anglo American is now turning its attention to the sale of its export mines in South Africa. At first, it said it would allow for a ‘just transition’, making sure the resources were husbanded properly. That’s still the working plan, but it’s a plan that is now tracking a shorter time frame – of under five years – compared to Anglo’s previous less specific estimates.

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