Energy investment beats projections

Updated: 2007-02-20 08:47

China's centrally-administered petroleum and petrochemical state-owned enterprises (SOEs) invested 395.58 billion yuan (about 52.05 billion U.S. dollars) last year, overtaking the projected figure by 18.8 percent.

Another 431.2 billion yuan (about 56.74 billion U.S. dollars) was invested by electric power enterprises, up 2.7 percent from the planned figure, statistics from the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) show.

These investments amounted to 63.6 percent of the total 1.3 trillion yuan (about 171 billion U.S. dollars) invested by the country's 159 centrally-administered SOEs.

Sources with the SASAC attributed the higher-than-expected investment in petroleum and petrochemical industries to overseas mergers and acquisitions for oil and gas resources and increased spending on oil and gas exploitation.

The Sinopec, for instance, forked out nine billion yuan more for its overseas projects.

The China National Petroleum Corporation was reported to have spent 24 billion yuan (3.16 billion U.S. dollars) more on oil exploitation alone.

Last year, the newly added petroleum reserve by centrally-administered SOEs was 803 million tons while that of natural gas stood around 517.6 billion cubic meters, said the SASAC.

The administration also noted that most of the investment by electric SOEs went to power grid building and power generation.

China's five largest electric power groups, Huaneng, Huadian, Longyuan, China Power Investment and Datang hold a combined installed capacity of 243.54 billion kilowatts, accounting for 39.1 percent of the country's total, up 3.1 percentage points from 2005, it said.

Sources with the SASAC said that these investments were quite necessary. Besides, the structure of China's energy industry improved obviously as more and more power generating SOEs turned to investing in new energy such as nuclear, wind and solar power to reduce coal consumption.

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