20 Bulk carriers caught up in The China-Australia Trade War

As the Trade War between China and Australia intensifies, Australian sectors begin to feel the heat as Beijing ups the pressure on its biggest trading partner.

The latest sector to face backlash on import is the Australian coal sector. The ongoing feud between China and Australia reached a new high this week with Chinese ports stalling at least 20 bulk carriers from offloading millions of tons of Australian coal, the latest casualty of the growing diplomatic row between Canberra and Beijing.

The above incident is happening in the Chinese port city of Jingtang. According to Bloomberg, fifteen of the ships have been waiting since June, and the rest have been halted for at least four weeks.

Jingtang is one of China's most important gateways for metallurgical coal imports used in steel production.

Beijing claims that the trade disruptions are due to an organic decline in demand; it has denied that it is deliberately prohibiting Australian imports from entering the mainland.

Some of the vessels that are waiting in Chinese ports to unload Australian coal for months are:

  1. Flourish Power: Waiting from June 1 with 93,000 MT coal.
  2. Topas: Waiting from 23rd May with 90,000 MT coal.
  3. C H S Splendor: Waiting from June 9 with 165,000 MT coal.
  4. Golden Barnet: Waiting since May 25 with 175,000 MT coal.
  5. Jag Anand: Waiting since May 26 with 174,000 MT coal.
  6. Hong Hing: Waiting since June 18 with 74,000 MT coal.
  7. Navios Coral: Waiting since June 6 with 82,000 MT coal.
  8. Knightship Capesize: Waiting since June 23 with 174,000 MT coal.

On a normal day however, bulkers usually take a few days to berth at Jingtang, with worst scenarios seeing the duration increase to 20 days.

Many ships that were on record to provide Australian coal to China are being deflected to India or Vietnam, while others remain waiting at Chinese ports, according to a recent report from Braemar.

Beijing’s increased scrutiny of Australian imports appears to be retaliation for Canberra leading the call for an independent investigation into the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic that started in the mainland.

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