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Conuma reopening second met coal mine in Canada

Conuma Coal Resources Ltd., an affiliate of ERP Compliant Fuels, will reopen the Wolverine mine Jan. 2, 2017, the Vancouver Sun reported.

Canada's Ministry of Energy and Mines told the Sun that Conuma expects to have the mine operating at full production levels by April, exporting 1.5 million tonnes of metallurgical coal annually.

The Wolverine mine is one of three that Conuma purchased from Walter Energy Inc. during Walter's bankruptcy proceedings. One of those, the Brule mine, was restarted in September.

Conuma told the Sun that the Wolverine mine is expected to create 220 jobs.

A surge in metallurgical coal prices earlier this year prompted some mine owners to take a look at ramping up production of the steel-making commodity, but analysts warned against overconfidence in the market. The surge was due in part to China limiting the number of days miners could work in an effort to reduce the country's chronic supply glut. Those restrictions have since been lifted.

Andrew Golding, Teck Resources Ltd.'s senior vice president of corporate development, said on Nov. 16 that the reopening of Conuma's mines is "indicative of the fact that some people are trying to start things up on a low capital intensity way."