9 Biggest Mining Companies in China

The growth of the mining industry in China shows no sign of slowing down. Despite a slowing economy and the continuing trade war with the United States, the steel industry in China shows signs of being resilient. In 2020, China produced about half of the world's steel and imported more than 70% of the world’s seaborne iron ore. 

The country also produced around 90% of the world’s rare earth metals in 2019. Minerals from the mining industry in China are used to make everything from iPhones to missiles, in addition to numerous other goods that the American consumer and the U.S. economy rely on.

Eight of these nine mining companies in China are included in PwC's 2020 list of the 40 largest mining companies in the world. The stocks of these companies trade on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange or the Shanghai Stock Exchange.

Key Takeaways

  • Despite a slowing economy and the continuing trade war with the United States, the mining industry continues to experience growth in China.
  • China produces about half of the world's steel, imports more than 70% of the world’s seaborne iron ore, and produces around 90% of the world’s rare earth metals as of 2019.
  • Eight of these nine mining companies in China are included in PwC's 2020 list of the 40 largest mining companies in the world.

China Shenhua Energy Co., Ltd.

China Shenhua is an integrated energy company that operates primarily through its coal division. The company operates several coal mines and is involved in the production and transportation of coal and coal products.

Its revenue for fiscal year 2020, was 233.263 billion RMB —a 3.6% decrease from the previous year. Its annual revenue for 2019 was 241.871 billion RMB—an 8.4% increase from 2018. The company's net income for 2020 was 43.984 billion RMB, an 11.6% decline from 2019.

China Coal Energy Co., Ltd.

China Coal Energy Company Limited mines and processes coal products. It produces thermal coal and coking coal products and also conducts coal chemical production, coal mining equipment manufacturing, pit mouth power generation, and coal mine design businesses.

For quarters one through three in 2019, the company's revenue was 94.238 billion RMB. In 2018, the company's revenue was 104.14 billion RMB, and its net income was 7.472 billion RMB.

Coking coal, also referred to as metallurgical coal, is used exclusively as an essential element for steel production.

Zijin Mining Group Co., Ltd.

Zijin Mining Group is principally involved in gold mining and smelting, though the company also mines for copper, lead, zinc, silver, and iron products in smaller quantities. For FY 2020, the company's revenue was was 171.501 billion RMB, and its net income was 8.458 billion RMB.

China Northern Rare Earth Group High-Tech Co., Ltd.

China Northern Rare Earth Group, formerly known as the Inner Mongolia Baotou Steel Rare Group, is engaged in producing rare earth metals, oxides, and salts. China Northern Rare Earth Group has a market capitalization of $70.409 billion USD in May 2021.

In the first quarter of 2021, the company's revenue was 6.33 billion CNY. The company's 2020 revenue was 21.15 billion CNY and its net income increased 35.10%.

Jiangxi Copper Co., Ltd.

Jiangxi Copper is one of China's largest copper producers. It manufactures, distributes copper products, and produces copper cathode and other copper products. Jiangxi Copper also operates minerals development, finance, investment, trade, logistics, and other businesses.

For the first quarter of 2021, the company's revenue was 102.036 billion CNY. Its revenue in 2020 was 318.563 billion CNY. Its net income was 2.320 billion CNY.

Shaanxi Coal and Chemical Industry Group Co., Ltd. 

Shaanxi Coal and Chemical mines, processes, and sells coal products. It also produces long flame coal, caking coal, noncaking coal, gas coal, lump coal, washed coal, coal chemicals, and other products.

For FY2020, the company's revenue was 94.86 billion CNY and its net income was 14.88 billion CNY.

China Molybdenum Co., Ltd.

China Molybdenum is a mineral mining and exploration company. It mines for molybdenum, tungsten, niobium, cobalt, copper, and more. For the first quarter of 2020, the company's revenue was 22.38 billion RMB. Its revenue for 2019 was 68.68 billion RMB, and its net income was 1.766 billion RMB.

Shandong Gold Mining Co., Ltd.

Shandong Gold Mining operates gold mining and production businesses. It provides gold exploration, processing, and outsourcing of gold smelting services. It also operates gold jewelry purification and non-ferrous metal production businesses.

For the first three quarters of 2019, the company's revenue was 64.828 billion RMB. Its revenue for 2018 was 54.787 billion RMB and the net income was 872.24 million RMB.

Yanzhou Coal Mining Co., Ltd.

Yanzhou Coal Mining Company Limited operates coal businesses. The company produces fine coal, blown coal, power coal, and coal chemical products. Yanzhou Coal Mining also operates power generation, railway transport, machinery manufacturing, and heating businesses.

For 2020 the company's revenue was 69.123 billion RMB, and its profit for the year was 5.56 billion RMB.

Article Sources
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  1. Government of Australia. "Resources and Energy Quarterly, March 2020: Iron Ore," Page 39.

  2. World Steel Association. "Global Crude Steel Output Decreases by 0.9% in 2020."

  3. Center for Strategic and International Studies, China Power Project. "Does China Pose a Threat to Global Rare Earth Supply Chains?"

  4. PwC. "Mine 2020," Page 26.

  5. China Shenhua Energy Company Limited. "2019 Annual Report," Page 10.

  6. China Shenhua Energy Company Limited. "2020 Annual Report," Page 20.

  7. China Coal Energy Company Limited. "Third Quarterly Report 2019," Page 2.

  8. China Coal Energy Company Limited. "Announcement of Annual Results for the Year Ended 31 December 2018," Page 2.

  9. Zijin Mining Group Company Limited. "2020 Annual Report," Page 170.

  10. Yahoo Finance. "China Northern Rare Earth (Group) Hi-Tech Co., Ltd (600111.S)."

  11. The Wall Street Journal. "China Northern Rare Earth (Group) High-Tech Co. Ltd. A."

  12. Yahoo Finance. "Jiangxi Copper Company Limited (0358.HK): Financials."

  13. Morningstar. "Shaanxi Coal Industry Co Ltd (601225)."

  14. China Molybdenum Co., Ltd. "2020 First Quarterly Financial Report," Page 3.

  15. China Molybdenum Co., Ltd. "Annual Results Announcement for the Year Ended 31 December 2019," Pages 13-14.

  16. Shandong Gold Mining Co., Ltd. "2019 Third Quarterly Report," Page 4.

  17. Shandong Gold Mining Co., Ltd. "2018 Annual Report," Page 4.

  18. Yanzhou Coal Mining Corporation Limited. "2020 Annual Report," Page 182.

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