The CEO for Australian coal producer New Hope Group, Rob Bishop, recently commented on the company’s performance for the year ended July 31, 2023 (FY23), which saw strong demand and global supply constraints push thermal coal prices to record levels in the first half of FY23.

“Exceptional performance across the business throughout FY23 enabled our team to capitalize on the market conditions, finishing the year with $730.7 million cash at bank, no debt following the convertible note repurchase and a net asset position of $2.52 billion,” Bishop said.

He said the company continues to focus on improving safety performance, with the All-Injury Frequency Rate and Total Recordable Injury Frequency Rate improving by 9% and 19% respectively.

“Our flagship operation, the Bengalla mine, delivered 9 million metric tons (mt) of saleable production in FY23, a reduction of 3% compared to FY22 and a commendable effort in light of rainfall, flooding and logistics disruptions,” Bishop said.

During the year, the New Hope received all necessary approvals from the Queensland Government for the New Acland Mine Stage 3, including an Environmental Authority, Mining Leases and an Associated Water License. “We are proud to be welcoming team members back to New Acland,” Bishop said. “Stage 3 operations commenced at the New Acland’s Manning Vale East Pit in May, and the coal handling and processing and plant (CHPP) washed first coal in early September.”

The company owns 15% of Malabar Resources, which operates the Maxwell mine, a 6.5 million mt/y underground metallurgical coal project near Muswellbrook, New South Wales. The Maxwell mine processed its first coal, and its first train was unloaded at the Port of Newcastle, during FY23.

“The investment in Malabar aligns with our strategy to invest into low-cost coal assets with long-life approvals,” Bishop said. “The acquisition diversifies our portfolio and is expected to provide attractive investment returns over the life of the project.”