Alliance Resource Partners said strong second-quarter coal sales volumes led total revenues higher to $516.1 million, an increase of 29.4% compared to the second quarter of 2017. Alliance is now essentially sold out for its planned 2018 sales volumes and has increased its anticipated export sales for this year to approximately 11.1 million tons.
“Coal sales volumes increased significantly as we shipped substantially all of the 1.4 million tons impacted by weather-related transportation disruptions during the sequential quarter,” said Joe Craft, president and CEO, Alliance. “U.S. coal market conditions remained favorable allowing us to secure new commitments for approximately 8.9 million tons to be delivered to domestic customers through 2021.”
Craft said Alliance booked an additional 4.6 million tons for delivery to the export markets over the next 12 to 18 months.
In response to growing international thermal coal demand, Alliance brought the first continuous mining unit back into operation at its Gibson North mine during the second quarter and they currently anticipate the second unit will commence production by the fourth quarter of this year.
Coal sales volumes were 10.5 million tons, 23.9% higher than the second quarter of 2017, primarily reflecting fulfillments of shipments delayed during the first quarter due to weather-related transportation disruptions, as well as increased export volumes. Production volumes increased 2.6% year-on-year to 9.7 million tons, primarily due to increased production at the Gibson South and River View mines and the resumption of operations at the Gibson North mine.