Colombia coal miner Cerrejon production, exports fell in 2020

14th January 2021 By: Reuters

BOGOTA – Colombian coal miner Cerrejon's production and export levels fell in 2020 due to lower demand, price declines, the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, and a three-month strike which paralyzed operations, the company said on Wednesday.

The miner produced 12.4-million tonnes of coal in 2020, down almost 52% from the 25.8-million tonnes it produced in 2019.

Exports fell 48.2% from 26.3-million tonnes in 2019 to 13.6-million tonnes in 2020, the lowest level in the last 18 years.

Last year was "one of the most difficult in Cerrejon's history," the company said in a statement, citing reduced activities during a 40-day period while it established biosecurity measures, and the 91-day strike, its longest ever, among other reasons.

The company is owned equally by BHP Group, Anglo American and Glencore.

Cerrejon, in La Guajira province, also controls a 150-km rail line and a seaport that receives ships carrying up to 180 000 tonnes of cargo.

Colombia produced 82.2-million tonnes of coal in 2019, which is the second-biggest contributor to the country's export earnings after oil.

The country was looking to match 2019 coal production levels in 2020.