Coal is Back in Play – Minergy

  • But the coal miner calls for relaxation of regulatory processes
  • Over 80 percent of Botswana’s coal exports go to SA and Namibia
  • Sanctions on Russia open new markets for coal


Over 80 percent of Botswana’s coal exports go to South Africa and Namibia and the numbers could peak if regulatory processes were relaxed and ease of doing business improved as a priority, the CEO of Minergy, Morne du Plessis, has said.

“In the last three months, however, sea-bound exports increased significantly with international traders buying to export to Europe and the West,” du Plessis told journalists after a recent tour of Morupule Coal Mine in Palapye.

“Minergy remains committed to its local markets and continues to supply. A massive increase in demand from international markets, stemming from the Ukraine war and sanctions on Russia, has come as a blessing to Minergy as lucrative pricing has made once uneconomical logistics feasible.”

“Demand for coal in Europe right now is driven by sanctions on Russian gas and coal and these show that Europe might well be over-exposed to ‘green’ (energy) with no back-up at times when there is no wind, running water, endless sunshine or is faced with supply shortages. Coal is back in play in Europe because of the war, and despite massive adoption of clean energy in the United States of America, not all of the US uses clean energy.”
He said coal burning in the US is in the midst of its biggest revival in a decade while China is said to be reopening shuttered mines and planning new ones. “Coal will remain an essential element in the energy mix,” du Plessis asserted. “We need to make use of cleaner coal in such a mix.”

Meanwhile, as a part of its corporate social responsibility, Minergy has improved infrastructure in areas where the company operates. “About 500 people have benefited from the electrification of Medie-Lentsweletau Mine and now have access to electricity through a self-funded prepaid system,” du Plessis disclosed.
“The quality of the road between Lentsweletau and Medie has been significantly upgraded compared to the state the road was in before mining operations in the area commenced.”