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August 2, 2008

Philippine Semirara sees coal exports to rise 25% in 2009
Semirara Mining Corp, the Philippines’ largest coal producer, it expects its coal shipments to increase by more than 25 percent next year from this year, reported Reuters on Friday.

The company, a unit of Philippine conglomerate DMCI Holdings Inc, told the Philippine Stock Exchange it expects coal export sales to reach more than 2 million tonnes in 2009 from 1.6 million tonnes this year.

Semirara started exporting coal last year to reduce its dependence on local consumers, such as the country’s largest power generation firm National Power Corp (Napocor).

In May, the company said it plans to spend 1.5 billion pesos this year to acquire new equipment to help expand annual capacity by 500,000 tonnes starting this year to meet rising demand overseas.

Total Semirara coal sales for 2007 rose 72 percent to 3.575 million tonnes. Of this, 800,000 tonnes was exported to China, India and Hong Kong and the rest sold domestically.

Easing crude prices have pushed coal prices down from a peak of $201 a tonne struck on July 1.

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