According to Interfax, OJSC Mechel Mining managers in Mezhdurechensk said the coal industry hit bottom in the summer, and the markets revived from September onwards, starting with China, then Korea and Japan. OJSC Mechel Mining has consolidated the Mechel group’s upstream assets. Mechel cut coal production 33% to 17.8 million mt in 2009, including coal produced by Mechel Bluestone since May 1, 2009. This included 10.2 million mt of coking coal.

Mechel OAO also announced it is making progress on developing the Elga coking coal deposit. At the beginning of February, two heavy machinery convoys had already reached the Upper Ulak railway construction site (Amur Region). The equipment will be used to develop Elga coking coal deposit. There will be five equipment and machinery convoys in total. They are expected to deliver all necessary equipment and materials to start construction of the open-pit mine and mining operations before April 2010.