Global sales from coal exports by country totaled US$118.5 billion in 2019. Worldwide, the value of coal exports increased by an average 50.9% for all exporting countries since 2015 when overall coal shipments were valued at $78.4 billion but a -6.8% drop from 2018 to 2019.
From a continental perspective, coal exports from Oceania (mostly Australia but also from New Zealand) amounted to $44.4 billion or 37.5% of international coal sales. Asian exporters generated 22.7% worth, trailed by European suppliers at 17.6% then North American suppliers at 12.7%. Smaller percentages came from exporters in Africa (5%) then Latin America (4.5%) excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean.
For research purposes, the 4-digit Harmonized Tariff System code prefix is 2701 for coal. Those digits encompass briquettes, ovoids and similar solid fuels manufactured from coal.
Coal Exports by Country TOP 15
Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of coal during 2019.
- Australia: US$44.4 billion (37.5% of total coal exports)
- Indonesia: $21.5 billion (18.2%)
- Russia: $16 billion (13.5%)
- United States: $9.8 billion (8.3%)
- Colombia: $5.2 billion (4.4%)
- Canada: $5.2 billion (4.4%)
- South Africa: $4.8 billion (4.1%)
- Netherlands: $3.2 billion (2.7%)
- Mongolia: $3.1 billion (2.6%)
- Mozambique: $1 billion (0.9%)
- China: $932.8 million (0.8%)
- Poland: $622.8 million (0.5%)
- Philippines: $460.6 million (0.4%)
- Kazakhstan: $449.7 million (0.4%)
- Belgium: $217.3 million (0.2%)
By value, the listed 15 countries shipped 98.3% of global coal exports in 2019.
The following countries posted the highest positive net exports for coal during 2019. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the surplus between the value of each country’s exported coal and its import purchases for that same commodity.
- Australia: US$44.4 billion (net export surplus up 49.8% since 2015)
- Indonesia: $20.8 billion (up 44.6%)
- Russia: $15.6 billion (up 76.8%)
- United States: $9.3 billion (up 92.8%)
- Colombia: $5.2 billion (up 21.7%)
- Canada: $4.4 billion (up 118.7%)
- South Africa: $4.4 billion (up 8.1%)
- Mongolia: $3.1 billion (up 453.8%)
- Mozambique: $1 billion (up 126,511%)
- Kazakhstan: $362.1 million (down -12.4%)
- United Arab Emirates: $52 million (reversing a -$202.9 million deficit)
- Venezuela: $38 million (down -55.6%)
- Botswana: $16.6 million (up 8.6%)
- New Zealand: $8.3 million (reversing a -$6.5 million deficit)
- Denmark: $8.1 million (up 30%)
Australia has the highest surplus in the international trade of coal. In turn, this positive cashflow confirms Australia’s strong competitive advantage for this specific product category.
The following countries posted the highest negative net exports for coal during 2019. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the deficit between the value of each country’s imported coal purchases and its exports for that same commodity.
- Japan: -US$23.3 billion (net export deficit up 42.6% since 2015)
- India: -$22.9 billion (up 64.6%)
- China: -$18 billion (up 87.1%)
- South Korea: -$14.1 billion (up 43.0%)
- Taiwan: -$7 billion (up 43.0%)
- Germany: -$4.5 billion (up 3.6%)
- Turkey: -$3.6 billion (up 22.2%)
- Malaysia: -$2.91 billion (up 122.9%)
- Brazil: -$2.88 billion (up 41%)
- Vietnam: -$2.1 billion (up 660.4%)
- France: -$1.6 billion (up 24%)
- Thailand: -$1.43 billion (up 9.2%)
- Ukraine: -$1.42 billion (down -10.1%)
- Philippines: -$1.4 billion (up 168.1%)
- Netherlands: -$1.3 billion (down -9.3%)
Densely populated Japan incurred the highest deficit in the international trade of coal, modestly ahead of four other Asian countries. In turn, this negative cashflow highlights Japan’s competitive disadvantage for this specific product category but also signals opportunities for coal-supplying countries that help satisfy the powerful demand.
Coal Exporting Companies
Below are global coal-processing conglomerates that represent established players engaged in the international trade of coal. The home country for each is shown within parenthesis.
- BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (Australia)
- Bumi Resources (Indonesia)
- China Kingho Group (China)
- DSM (Netherlands)
- Exxaro Resources (South Africa)
- Kompania Węglowa (Poland)
- Peabody Energy (United States)
- Pioneer Coal Limited (Canada)
- Siberian Coal Energy Company (Russia)
- SouthGobi Resources (Mongolia)
The listed 15 countries shipped 98.8% of global coal exports in 2019 by value. Among the top exporters, the fastest-growing coal exporters since 2015 were: Mozambique (up 36,789%), Mongolia (up 453.7%), Philippines (up 211.4%) and Canada (up 91.1%)
Two top suppliers posted declines in their exported coal sales namely Poland (down -15%) and Belgium (down -2.3%).