Russian miner Mechel says Q2 coal output up 9 pct q/q

MOSCOW Fri Aug 2, 2013 7:25am EDT

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MOSCOW Aug 2 (Reuters) - Indebted Russian miner Mechel said on Friday second-quarter coal production rose 9 percent quarter-on-quarter to 7 million tonnes.

The firm, one of Russia's top producers of coking coal, said sales of the steelmaking ingredient were down 8 percent year-on-year in the first half of 2013 partly due to flagging prices.

"The 8 percent decrease in overall coking coal sales...was due to our revision of production plans for Mechel North America (Mechel Bluestone) as prices on our key markets decreased," Chief Executive Evgeny Mikhel said in a statement.

Mechel, which has put non-core assets up for sale to service its debt of over $9 billion, said last week it had received several approaches for the U.S. coal business.

The firm said second-quarter steel production fell 4 percent quarter-on-quarter to 1.2 million tonnes, but said the launch of a new 1.1 million tonne capacity mill in July would have a positive impact on Mechel's results this year. (Reporting by Alessandra Prentice; Editing by Katya Golubkova)

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