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Thursday, July 16, 2015

South African coal terminal to spend $108m on upgrade - Mineweb

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 July 16:

Ships are loaded with coal at Richards Bay Coal Terminal, RBCT, in Richards Bay, South Africa, in this company handout provided to the media on Thursday, Nov. 22, 2007. RBCT, situated on South Africa's north east coast, is the world's biggest coal-export facility and shipped 7.3 million metric tons of coal in the ten months ending in October compared with 300,000 tons last year. Source: Richard's Bay Coal Terminal

Five existing substations will be reconfigured and one new station will be built.

South Africa’s Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT) will begin this year a 1.34 billion rand ($108 million) machine replacement program to upgrade a facility that has been running for four decades, the company said on Thursday.

Some of the machinery at Africa’s biggest coal terminal, including coal ship loaders and stacker reclaimers, have less than three years of shelf life left.

Five existing substations will be reconfigured and one new station will be built in a project that will be completed in January 2018, officials said.

The project goes ahead despite low coal prices.

“We have to be brave,” RBCT’s Chief Executive Nosipho Siwisa-Damasane told reporters.

Coal demand from China, one of the world’s biggest importers, is down 34 percent since peaks reached before the 2008 financial crisis.

The terminal on South Africa’s east coast exported a record 71.3 million tonnes of coal in 2014 and is set to expand its capacity to over 74 million tonnes this year.

“There will be minimal impact on shipments of coal as old machines will be used while the others are being built or replaced,” Head engineer Bill Murphy said.


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