Australian coal exports are bouncing back following disruptions caused by Cyclone Debbie

Australian coal exports are bouncing back, recovering from damage caused by Cyclone Debbie, which disrupted key supply routes in Queensland in late March and throughout most of April.

This chart puts the recent weather-related slump, and subsequent recovery, into visual form.

Source: Westpac

From Westpac, it uses shipping data to estimate volumes for Australia’s key commodity exports.

“Australian coal exports are continuing the recovery after the hit from cyclone Debbie,” says Robert Rennie, global head of market strategy at Westpac. “The current run rate for May is 31.5 million tonnes (mt), up 9.9mt after being down 9mt in April due to flooding.

Despite the recent recovery, Rennie notes the April export total would still be down 1.8% on a year earlier.

Of Australia’s other major commodity exports — iron ore and LNG — Rennie says that both are likely to lift modestly in May based off recent shipping data.

And that could see LNG exports hit another record high.

“The current run rate for LNG shipping activity suggests we should be looking for close to record exports of 4.6mt in May, helped by a strong rebound in exports from Karratha in May,” he says.

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