BEIJING - China's energy administration has approved a coal mining project with annual production capacity of 2.4 million tonnes in the western Chinese region of Ningxia, it said on Friday.

The approval was granted to Ningxia Xinqiao Energy Development Co and the project will involve total investment of 3.53 billion yuan ($555.28 million), the National Energy Administration said in a statement.

($1 = 6.3572 Chinese yuan renminbi)

(Reporting by Muyu Xu and Tony Munroe Editing by David Goodman ) ((; +86 10 56692117;))