Kiev — Ukraine's coal production increased by 6.4% year on year, or 602,000 mt, to 10 million mt in the first quarter, the energy and coal industry ministry reported Thursday.
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In March, coal output increased by 11.1% year on year to 3.39 million mt, the ministry reported, citing preliminary data.
Ukrainian coal production has been disrupted since June 2014 due to an armed conflict with Moscow-backed pro-Russian separatists in Donetsk and Lugansk, the country's two key coal production regions.
Most of coal mines in those regions were shut down and more than 1 million people had to flee since the start of the intensive fighting in June 2014, according to the government's estimates. However, coal output has been recovering slightly after an agreement was reached in Minsk last year between Ukraine and Russia over a ceasefire in the conflict zone.
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Coal output in the government-controlled parts of the Donetsk region increased by 25% year on year to 4.05 million mt in Q1. Production of coal in the government-controlled parts of the Lugansk region increased by 15.7% to 1.07 million mt.
At the same time, coal output in the Dnipropetrovsk region fell 5.2% to 4.42 million mt, output in the Lviv region dropped 21.4% to 391,500 mt and output in the Volyn region plunged 32.9% to 54,600 mt.
In 2015, Ukraine's coal output fell by 38.8% year on year to 39.76 million mt and by 52.5% from 2013, according to the ministry.
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