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BEIJING (AP) — China Shenhua Energy Co., the country's biggest coal producer, says its first-half profit rose 17 percent on strong sales despite a weakening economy.
China Shenhua said it earned 26.7 billion yuan ($4.2 billion), or 1.34 yuan (21 U.S. cents) per share, in the six months ending June 30, up from 22.8 billion yuan ($3.6 billion) a year earlier. Revenue rose 20 percent to 121.5 billion yuan ($19.3 billion).
Shenhua's strong results came despite a slowdown in China's rapid economic expansion that saw growth fall to a three-year low in the second quarter. Slack global growth also pushed down coal prices.
The company also operates five railways for coal transportation.
Shenhua said it expects "significant growth" in coal demand if a Chinese economic recovery takes hold as expected in the second half of the year. It said sales also should be helped by relatively low coal prices and diminished use of hydropower by utility companies once the rainy season ends.
"The macroeconomic improvement will be beneficial for the recovery of energy demand for coal and other fundamental energy resources," the company's board of directors said in a statement.
China Shenhua Energy Co.:
China Shenhua Energy Co. (in Chinese): www.shenhuachina.com/html/index.html