According to The Australian Financial Review, Australian coal exporters can still have a prosperous future in a world of slow but steady demand in growth for coal increasingly concentrated in Asia, the International Energy Agency (IEA) says.
IEA says in its 2015 World Energy Outlook that Australia's coal exports will increase by more than a third to 424 million tonnes a year between now and 2040.
The steady growth in Australia's coal exports will come thanks to a booming growth in demand from India and south-east Asia, which will more than offset a sharp fall in demand from China, Europe and the United States.
The IEA's projections see Australia regaining the mantle of the world's largest coal exporter from Indonesia by 2020 as surging domestic demand in south-east Asia absorbs more of that regions' coal production.
The sharp increase in Indian and south-east Asian demand more than offsets falls in China, Japan, Korea and Europe, leaving coal consumption to grow at a subdued annual rate of 0.4 per cent, more slowly than previously projected.
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