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China to restructure National Energy Administration

Updated: 2013-03-10 08:53

BEIJING - China plans to restructure the National Energy Administration (NEA) in order to streamline the administrative and regulatory systems of the energy sector, according to a report delivered by State Councilor Ma Kai to the parliament's annual session on Sunday.

The new NEA will incorporate the functions of the State Electricity Regulatory Commission, Ma said in the report on the institutional reform of the State Council, China's cabinet.

China to restructure National Energy Administration

The State Electricity Regulatory Commission (SERC) is to be dissolved, according to the state councilor.

The main responsibilities of the consolidated administration will include drafting and implementing energy development strategies, plans and policies, advising on energy system reform and regulating the sector, Ma said.

The planned restructuring is aimed at "further pushing forward the development and reform of the energy sector and enhancing its supervision and regulation," he added.

In the last round of government institutional reform in 2008, China established the NEA, which was under the jurisdiction of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).

The new administration will remain under the jurisdiction of the NDRC, which will focus on coordination between planning in the energy sector and that of the national economy and social development, Ma said.

"China is a large energy consumer. Ensuring national energy security and the development of the energy sector is of significant importance," according to a statement from the State Commission Office for Public Sector Reform.

China consumed 3.62 billion tonnes of standard coal equivalent in 2012, up 3.9 percent year on year, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) reported in February.

Last year, the consumption of coal, crude oil, natural gas and electricity rose 2.5 percent, 6.0 percent, 10.2 percent and 5.5 percent from a year earlier, respectively.

"Electricity is an important form of energy," according to the statement. "Keeping the electricity sector outside the jurisdiction of the NEA has resulted in the overlapping of functions and responsibilities between the NEA and the SERC, a disadvantage to the overall planning of the energy sector and the development of the electricity industry."

The overlapping duties of the two agencies include electricity sector reform, as well as investment entry, project approval and pricing in the sector, according to the statement.