The annual growth of coal consumption during 2016-2020 will remain at 2%, said CNCA President Wang Xianzheng during an industry conference. For the next five years, the coal industry will prioritize restructuring and upgrades, which means cutting capacity and more mergers, Xianzheng said.

China’s coal consumption decreased in the first quarter of this year, reaching 910 million tons, down 3.7% year-on-year, CNCA data showed. Coal accounted for 64% of the primary energy last year, down 4.5% from 2012.

The state council announced earlier this year plans to slash capacity in the coal industry and stop approving any new coal mines before the end of 2019. The country will shut down 500 million tons of capacity and consolidate another 500 million tons into the hands of the most efficient mine operators in the next three to five years.