China sets 'green' tax incentives
Updated: 2005-12-22 19:00
China said Wednesday that it
would offer tax breaks and loans to industries including agriculture, oil and
gas exploration and coal mining, particularly focusing on environmentally
The National Development and Reform Commission will classify industries that
are to be "encouraged," "restricted" or "to be eliminated," the top planning
body said in a statement.
Environmentally responsible projects like the production of low-emission
automobiles would also gain government support, Liu Zhi, director for industrial
policy at the planning body, told reporters.
China, the world's second-biggest energy consumer after the United States,
aims to become more energy efficient as its use of resources - including
minerals and energy products - continues to rise. That consumption trend will
not change in the near future, Ma Kai, head of the top planning body, said
Tuesday on the agency's Web site.
The new guidelines, which will be revised annually, restrict investments in
coal-fueled power generators smaller than 300,000 kilowatts and some
petrochemical projects with annual capacity of less than 200,000 metric tons.
Industries that have caused environmental damage and that have been wasteful
in energy consumption, such as power generators smaller than 50,000 kilowatts
and oil refining units smaller than one million tons, will be shut in the coming
year, according to the guidelines.
Priorities include nuclear power plants, rural power grid and
water-irrigation systems, coal mines with annual capacity larger than 1.2
million tons and the exploration and production of crude oil and natural gas in
China and abroad, Liu said.
"Chinese oil companies need to go overseas to seek energy
assets and the government encourages that," Liu said. "The price at which they
pay for the assets must still be within the limits of the companies."