Chinese officials have ordered more than 70 mines in Inner Mongolia to ramp up coal production by nearly 100 million tonnes as the country battles its worst power crunch and coal shortages in years. The authorities face record-high prices and shortages of electricity that have prompted power rationing across the country, crippling industrial output. The proposed increase would make up nearly 3% of China’s total thermal coal consumption. In an urgent notice dated Oct. 7, the Inner Mongolia regional energy department asked the cities of Wuhai, Ordos and Hulunbuir, as well as Xilingol League, or prefecture, to notify 72 mines that they may operate at stipulated higher capacities immediately, provided they ensure safe production. An official with the region’s energy bureau confirmed the notice but declined to say how long the production boost would be allowed to last. China thermal coal prices surge on […]