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China, the world's biggest coal producer (more than a billion tons of coal a year, accounting for 60 percent of world trade), is beginning to wield its influence as a major coal-exporter to secure a dominant position in the sector and control world prices...China's economic boom has been built on the back of coal. Under the actual conditions in China, coal fired power generation is generally the most practical and economical way of power generation in this country. The 80% of power generated in China comes from coal; nuclear power will account for less than 1% and hydropower less than 20%. It is expected that coal fired power generation has long been and will continue to be the main source of electricity of this country in the past, present and in the next 50 years in the future...The first half of this year has seen successive coalmine accidents. Statistics show that from April 1 to May 16, 62 accidents occurred in coalmines, causing casualties of 503 people. Often the pits may be as much as 260 metres below the surface and their condition is also unknown...These small coalmines, which are usually run by enterprises to gain profit for themselves, have no basic safety guarantee and their management paid less attention to government regulations on safety working and operation...Small coal mines in Wuhai area. A weigh-house.