SHANGHAI, June 8 -- China, the world's second-biggest oil user, will hasten reforms of electricity pricing and taxes imposed on the extraction of natural resources as part of efforts to spur energy conservation, a government official said.
The country, the world's largest coal consumer, will also introduce financial policies and set up a fund to boost recycling to help cut carbon emissions and develop a green economy, Xie Zhenhua, vice chairman of the National Development and Reform Commission, said at the Bloomberg Businessweek Global Green Business Summit in Shanghai today.
The world's fastest-growing major economy lowered its energy use per unit of gross domestic product by 14.38 percent between 2006 and 2009, and plans to reduce consumption by 20 percent in the five years to 2010. Energy use rose 3.2 percent in the first three months of this year, adding to the pressure to meet the goal, Premier Wen Jiabao said on May 6.
China may impose a progressive power-pricing system for residential users in 2010 to encourage energy saving, Xie said during the summit.
The government will push ahead with the introduction of a progressive power-pricing system and curb exports of high energy-consuming products, the State Council, or Cabinet, said on April 28. China increased electricity surcharges by as much as twofold for industries including cement, steel and zinc smelting on June 1.
The government in Beijing imposed this month a 5 percent tax on the crude oil and natural gas produced in Xinjiang based on selling prices. The western region is the first province to switch from a volume-based levy.