BOGOTA Jan 23 A new 22-million-tonne-capacity
Colombian coal port by Glencore International PLC's
Prodeco unit should be ready in the next "few months", the
government said on Wednesday.
Two of Colombia's top three coal exporters, Prodeco and
Drummond International, are building new Caribbean ports to
expand capacity as they ramp up production and because of a
change in rules requiring upgrades to how coal is put on ships.
"We just met with (Glencore Chief Executive) Ivan
Glasenberg. He said that the Prodeco port in Santa Marta will be
ready in a few months," Mauricio Cardenas, the finance minister
and a former mining minister, said in a message on Twitter.
Prodeco is Colombia's third-largest coal exporter and is
planning to double production to around 21 million tonnes by
2015. The Andean nation's other top producers are also
increasing output and expanding their infrastructure.
Prodeco's "Puerto Nuevo" harbor will have an initial
capacity of 22 million tonnes per year and its construction had
been expected to be completed in the first half of this year,
according to the company's website.
Colombia, the world's No. 4 coal exporter, has seen a boom
in investment, especially in the oil and mining sectors. Its
high-quality thermal coal production is dominated by Glencore's
Prodeco, Cerrejon and Drummond.
Colombian coal ports are supposed to upgrade to become
direct loading by 2014. Drummond is also building a port that is
right next to Prodeco's harbor.
Cerrejon's port is already direct loading.