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Diesel costs hamper cremation industry

Updated: 2012-04-04 07:48
By Shi Yingying in Shanghai ( China Daily)

Shanghai's funeral homes said they have lost money when cremating bodies in recent years because of an increase in diesel prices.

Their relatively low cremation fees, which haven't changed in 17 years, have forced the industry to charge more for related services to make up for those losses, an industry insider said.

Cao Baofu, deputy director of Shanghai's Yishan Funeral Home, said it takes a loss of about 260 yuan ($41) on average to cremate a corpse, "because the Shanghai price bureau set the standard charge for cremation at 180 yuan as early as 1995, while the average cost, taking into account labor costs, electricity, machine depreciation and - most importantly - diesel fuel prices, has increased about nine times within 17 years to 440 yuan".

Diesel costs hamper cremation industry