China will study ways to impose tougher tax measures for resource
exploitation to curb excessive consumption, Ma Kai, China's top economic
planner, said on Monday.
The current taxes, which are levied according
to the amount of resources exploited, are "obviously too low", Ma said.
each ton of crude oil is sold at more than 3,000 yuan (375 U.S. dollars) in
China, the cost of the tax is only 14 to 30 yuan per ton," Ma said.
In the next five years, the government will speed up tax reforms in this
area, which will be an important tool to promote resource efficiency, he said.
There are hard nuts to crack in the reform, including setting different tax
rates for exploiting different grades of ores and avoiding damage to consumers'
interests and other related industries, said Ma.
While China's gross domestic product accounted for 5.5 percent of the world
economy last year, it used energy equaling 2.46 billion tons of standard coal,
about 15 percent of the world's total energy consumption, said Ma.
The country used 388 million tons of steel last year, 30 percent of the
world's total and 1.24 billion tons of cement, 54 percent of the world's total.
Most of the country's 130,000 mining enterprises have obtained their mining
rights free of charge or at a low cost. The low threshold for mining has led to
severe safety problems.
Last November, China began charging fees for coal prospecting and mining in
eight major coal-producing provinces and regions.
(For more biz stories, please visit Industry Updates)