Colombian strike pushed up coal prices

Strikes which rocked Colombia’s coal sector for more than three weeks pushed up power prices. Workers on the country’s main coal-shunting railway have been on an union-organised strike to push […]

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By Vicky Ellis

Strikes which rocked Colombia’s coal sector for more than three weeks pushed up power prices.

Workers on the country’s main coal-shunting railway have been on an union-organised strike to push for higher wages. Yesterday a Colombian court ruled the strike illegal, say reports.

The country is the fourth largest coal exporter but some firms including Drummond International have been forced to announce they are reducing output in the country because of the strike action, which is said to have ended with the court ruling yesterday.

While the South American industrial action was ongoing, coal made up a significant portion of power prices in the “generation stack”, according to a weekly market review.

Magali Hodgson, npower’s Optimisation Desk Manager said: “Bullish coal due to the Colombian strike actually took the power market up”.

She suggested falling oil production from the North Sea as well as the ongoing Syrian crisis and poor Chinese industrial figures also affected power prices.