BEIJING, Dec 7 (Reuters) - China's November coal imports rose 20.9% from the previous month, customs data showed on Thursday, as buyers took advantage of cheaper imported coal to stock up for winter.

China, the world's largest coal buyer, imported 43.51 million tons last month, a 34.7% increase from November a year ago, before China ended a ban on shipments of Australian coal in January 2023, figures from the General Administration of Customs showed.

Imported coal maintained a price advantage to domestic coal in November, spurring purchases by utilities, while a seasonal decline in hydropower generation also supported coal demand, analysts from industry association China Coal Transportation and Distribution Association said this week.

Total coal imports in the first 11 months of the year stood at 427.14 million tons, up 62.9% from the same period of 2022, the customs data showed. (Reporting by Colleen Howe Editing by Shri Navaratnam)