Coal Trading Market Size & Share Analysis - Growth Trends & Forecasts (2024 - 2029)

The Coal Trading Market Report is Segmented by Types of Coal (steam Coal, Coking Coal, and Lignite), Types of Traders (importers and Exporters), and Geography (North America, Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and South America). The Report Offers the Market Size and Forecasts for the Coal Trading Market in Revenue (USD) for all the Above Segments.

Coal Trading Market Size

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Coal Trading Market Summary
Study Period 2019-2029
Market Size (2024) USD 9.73 Billion
Market Size (2029) USD 12.23 Billion
CAGR (2024 - 2029) 4.68 %
Fastest Growing Market Asia Pacific
Largest Market Asia Pacific

Major Players

Coal Trading Market Major Players

*Disclaimer: Major Players sorted in no particular order


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Coal Trading Market Analysis

The Coal Trading Market size is estimated at USD 9.73 billion in 2024, and is expected to reach USD 12.23 billion by 2029, growing at a CAGR of 4.68% during the forecast period (2024-2029).

Over the medium term, coal is majorly consumed in various sectors, such as industry, transport, residential, commercial and public services, agriculture, fishing, and several non-energy areas that generate the coal demand, leading to the trade of coal between the nations.

On the other hand, power from coal is getting mixed up with other alternative sources, like renewables and natural gas, which help to reduce the environmental impact as compared to coal. These factors, in turn, are expected to restrain the growth of the coal trading market in the coming years.

Nevertheless, with the growing demand for electricity, coal power plants in the Asia-Pacific region are expected to be a significant consumer of coal. The region is expected to have a demand of around 4,400 megatons of coal equivalent (Mtce) by 2040, with the majority of demand from the power sector. This demand for coal is expected to create an opportunity for the coal trading market in the future.

Asia-Pacific dominated the coal trading market with China and India as the major importer, and Australia and Indonesia are among the major exporter of coal.

Coal Trading Market Trends

Importer and Exporter to Maintain an Equal Share in the Market

  • The coal trading market is primarily operated by importers and exporters that enable them to meet the demand for coal in various regions of the world. Around 12 significant importers and 12 major exporters are present that run the coal trading market.
  • According to the Energy Institute, the total global coal imports were 32.47 exajoules in 2022, with a growth of 3.5% from the previous year.
  • In 2022, China, India, Japan, and Europe are the major coal importers, while Russia, Australia, and Indonesia are the major exporters.
  • Further, in April 2023, Coal trader PT Andamas Global Energi (AGE), a subsidiary of the Andamas Group, announced plans to double its coal trading volume to 2 million tonnes in 2025, with coal to be sourced primarily from mines located in Lahat Regency, South Kalimantan Province, Indonesia.
  • With the rising demand for coal, especially in the Asia-Pacific region, it is expected that, by 2025, the global market of coal is likely to be nearly 5,000 megatons of coal equivalent (mice). Europe and North America are expected to reduce coal consumption. Still, Asia-Pacific is expected to remain dominated by coal as a significant source of power owing to its large population and increasing electricity demand.
Coal Trading Market: Coal Imports, in Exajoules, Global,  2015-2022

Asia-Pacific is Dominating the Market

  • The Asia-Pacific region is the major coal trader worldwide that continues to trade a significant percentage of coal from the last few decades. With major coal-dependent countries, Asia-Pacific has the highest rate of imported market share.
  • Electricity generation from coal, the major sector of coal demand in China and India, makes the region the most dominating market in the world.
  • China remains the world's highest coal importer, with a net volume of 5.83 Exajoules in 2022, a decrease of 9.2% from the previous year. Further, Indonesia was the world's largest exporter of thermal coal increased its exports from 8.16 exajoule in 2012 to 9.19 exajoules in 2022.
  • Moreover. the region significantly utilizes coal as the primary fuel for electricity generation. However, several countries in the region have pledged to retire coal power plants and become carbon neutral. However, as the demand for electricity rises, the nations are still using coal for power generation. The process of transition will take time to shift.
  • As of January 2023, China has the highest number of operating coal thermal power plants in the world. Till January 2023, China has around 3092 units of operating coal thermal power plants, 499 under-construction coal power plants, and 112 announced coal power plants. Hence, such a trend would propel the coal trading market in the upcoming years.
  • Thus, the Asia Pacific region will likely witness significant growth in the coal trading market during the forecast period.
Coal Trading Market - Growth Rate by Region, 2023-2028

Coal Trading Industry Overview

The coal trading market is partially consolidated. Some of the key players in the coal trading market (not in particular order) include Trafigura Group Pte. Ltd., Mitsubishi Corporation RtM Japan Ltd., Glencore Plc., Mercuria Energy Group, and Vitol Holding B.V., among others.

Coal Trading Market Leaders

  1. Trafigura Group Pte. Ltd.

  2. Glencore Plc.

  3. Mercuria Energy Group

  4. Vitol Holding B.V

  5. Mitsubishi Corporation RtM Japan Ltd.

*Disclaimer: Major Players sorted in no particular order

Coal Trading Market Concentration
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Coal Trading Market News

  • February 2022: Russia and China announced the development of an intergovernmental agreement on the supply of coal in the amount of 100 million tons. According to the government of Russia, the Asia-Pacific region has a significant market for coal till 2030. The countries have started working on the agreement.
  • January 2022: Adani announced it won a contract to supply coal to NTPC, India’s state-owned electricity generator. The company will provide 1 million tons of coal to various power plants.

Coal Trading Market Report - Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Scope of the Study

    2. 1.2 Market Definition

    3. 1.3 Study Assumptions




    1. 4.1 Introduction

    2. 4.2 List of Coal Importing and Exporting Countries by Quantity, 2022

    3. 4.3 Coal Trading Forecast in USD, till 2028

    4. 4.4 Recent Trends and Developments

    5. 4.5 Government Policies and Regulations

    6. 4.6 Market Dynamics

      1. 4.6.1 Drivers

        1. Increasing Demand for Coal Based Power Generation Sector

        2. Ease of Availability of Coal for Various Sectors, Such as Transport, Residential, Commercial and Others

      2. 4.6.2 Restraints

        1. Increasing Adoption of Renewable Energy

    7. 4.7 Supply Chain Analysis

    8. 4.8 Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.8.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      2. 4.8.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers

      3. 4.8.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.8.4 Threat of Substitute Products and Services

      5. 4.8.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry


    1. 5.1 Coal Type

      1. 5.1.1 Steam Coal

      2. 5.1.2 Coaking Coal

      3. 5.1.3 Lignite

    2. 5.2 Traders Type

      1. 5.2.1 Importer

      2. 5.2.2 Exporter

    3. 5.3 Geography

      1. 5.3.1 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

        3. Rest of North America

      2. 5.3.2 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. France

        3. United Kingdom

        4. Rest of Europe

      3. 5.3.3 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. India

        3. Japan

        4. South Korea

        5. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      4. 5.3.4 South America

        1. Brazil

        2. Argentina

        3. Rest of South America

      5. 5.3.5 Middle-East and Africa

        1. Saudi Arabia

        2. United Arab Emirates

        3. South Africa

        4. Rest of Middle-East and Africa


    1. 6.1 Mergers and Acquisitions, Joint Ventures, Collaborations, and Agreements

    2. 6.2 Strategies Adopted by Leading Players

    3. 6.3 Company Profiles

      1. 6.3.1 Glencore PLC

      2. 6.3.2 Vitol Holding BV

      3. 6.3.3 Trafigura Group Pte Ltd.

      4. 6.3.4 Mercuria Energy Group

      5. 6.3.5 Hind Energy and Coal Beneficiary India limited

      6. 6.3.6 China Shenhua Energy Company Limited

      7. 6.3.7 China Coal Energy Company Limited

      8. 6.3.8 Mitsubishi Corporation RtM Japan Ltd

      9. 6.3.9 Centennial Coal Company Limited

      10. 6.3.10 Borneo Coal Trading

    4. *List Not Exhaustive

    1. 7.1 Growing Demand for Electricity Coupled with Raising Coal Power Plants in the Asia-Pacific Region

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Coal Trading Industry Segmentation

The trading of coal pertains to the purchase and sale of coal as a commodity among nations, corporations, or individuals. Coal is a fossil fuel primarily utilized for generating electricity and industrial applications. It originates from the remnants of plants that thrived and perished millions of years ago, and it is located in underground deposits. The coal trade encompasses the extraction of coal from mines or open pits, its transport to processing facilities or ports, and its subsequent dissemination to end-users. This trade can assume diverse manifestations, such as internal trade within a nation and cross-border trade between countries.

The coal trading market is segmented by type of coal, type of traders, and geography. By the type of coal, the market is segmented into steam coal, coking coal, and lignite. By types of traders, the market is segmented into importer and exporter. The report also covers the market size and forecasts for the coal trading market across major regions, such as North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, South America, the Middle East, and Africa. 

For each segment, market sizing and forecasts have been done based on revenue (USD).

Coal Type
Steam Coal
Coaking Coal
Traders Type
North America
United States
Rest of North America
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
South Korea
Rest of Asia-Pacific
South America
Rest of South America
Middle-East and Africa
Saudi Arabia
United Arab Emirates
South Africa
Rest of Middle-East and Africa
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Coal Trading Market Research FAQs

The Coal Trading Market size is expected to reach USD 9.73 billion in 2024 and grow at a CAGR of 4.68% to reach USD 12.23 billion by 2029.

In 2024, the Coal Trading Market size is expected to reach USD 9.73 billion.

Trafigura Group Pte. Ltd., Glencore Plc., Mercuria Energy Group, Vitol Holding B.V and Mitsubishi Corporation RtM Japan Ltd. are the major companies operating in the Coal Trading Market.

Asia Pacific is estimated to grow at the highest CAGR over the forecast period (2024-2029).

In 2024, the Asia Pacific accounts for the largest market share in Coal Trading Market.

In 2023, the Coal Trading Market size was estimated at USD 9.27 billion. The report covers the Coal Trading Market historical market size for years: 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023. The report also forecasts the Coal Trading Market size for years: 2024, 2025, 2026, 2027, 2028 and 2029.

The biggest challenges facing the Coal Trading Industry are a) The rapid development and falling costs of renewable energy sources like solar and wind b) Increasing awareness of climate change and the environmental impacts of coal combustion

Coal Trading Industry Report

The global coal trading market is witnessing significant growth, fueled by rising demand across various sectors and characterized by the trade of lignite, sub-bituminous, bituminous, and anthracite coal. Lignite's affordability makes it a preferred choice despite transportation challenges. The Asia Pacific region, led by China and India's rapid industrialization, is driving demand, with coal remaining a key energy source despite environmental concerns. Technological advancements and improved supply chains are enhancing distribution efficiency. However, environmental regulations and renewable energy adoption present challenges. Still, the demand from the chemical industry and for electricity generation supports market growth, with the electricity sector, cement, and steel production being major contributors. The market is poised for expansion, driven by industrial and infrastructural development worldwide. For detailed market insights, Mordor Intelligence™ offers a comprehensive analysis and forecast available as a free report PDF download.

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Coal Trading Market Size & Share Analysis - Growth Trends & Forecasts (2024 - 2029)