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Ukraine Importing 160,000 Mt of Anthracite Coal from South Africa

 Ukraine will import 160,000 metric tons of anthracite coal from South Africa, with the first ship set to arrive by the end of September, energy and coal industry minister Volodymyr Demchyshyn said Wednesday.

The coal will be imported by CenterEnergo, one of Ukraine's four major fossil fuel-burning power generation companies.

"They contracted two boats," Demchyshyn said at a government meeting quoted by the government's press service. "One boat will arrive by September 20 and the other one by October 15."Ukraine, whose coal industry has been disrupted by the armed conflict with pro-Russian separatists in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, is stepping up coal imports to accumulate enough coal for the winter.

A shipment of 200,000 mt of anthracite coal from Russia is already on its way and should arrive at CenterEnergo power plants within the next few weeks, according to Demchyshyn.

Anthracite imported from South Africa will cost about $77-80/mt, while coal imported from Russia will cost $65-67/mt, according to Demchyshyn.

Ukraine needs to store about 3.2 million mt of coal, including 1.4 million mt of anthracite, by October 15, when the high-demand season is due to begin, according to the energy ministry.

Ukraine's reserves of anthracite coal rose to 585,700 mt as of August 25, compared with 574,900 mt as of August 17, according to UkrEnergo, which operates the country's power grid.

Ukraine's overall coal reserves, including anthracite, rose by 3.1% over the past eight days to 1.318 million mt as of August 25, UkrEnergo said.

CenterEnergo incorporates Trypilska TPP in the Kiev region, Zmiyevska TPP in the Kharkiv region and Vuhlehirska TPP in the Donetsk region with total installed capacity of 7,665 MW.