China sees natural gas as a supplement to the national energy supply

Nov 11, 1999 01:00 AM

China will continue to experiment with the use of imported natural gas, but will only use it as a supplement to the national energy supply, according to a chief economic official. China's energy industry will be built upon a domestic supply of fuel, stressed Zhang Guobao, deputy minister in charge of the State Development Planning Commission (SDPC), in an address to the Sino-IEA Conference on Natural Gas Industry.
Zhang was focusing on the prospects of China's natural gas industry, and the government's policy in this area. He said he believed the nation's demand for natural gas would have a big rise in the next century, and the proportion of natural gas in China's total energy consumption would also increase.
China is formulating a plan for using natural gas and expanding exploration projects. The government is researching pricing, taxation and financing of the natural gas industry. Meanwhile, the development of coal bed methane is getting more attention, Zhang said.
He reiterated China's policy to widen overseas co-operation in the industry, and mentioned two projects, the imports of LNG in the south-east coast areas, and the trans- national gas pipeline. He stressed that China, which holds abundant coal and water resources, will emphasise the development of renewable energy such as water, nuclear and clean coal, he stressed.

Li Yongwu, director of the State Petroleum and Chemical Industry Bureau (SPCIB), also spoke to the group. He said China's proven natural gas reserves amount to only about 5 % of the estimated reserve and there is great potential for further development. China plans an output of 25 bn cm of natural gas by 2000, and 80 bn cm by 2010, he said. It is estimated that China has a natural gas reserve of 38 tcm, with 29.9 tcm onshore and 8.1 tcm offshore. Eighty % of this reserve is in Sichuan, Chongqing, Shaanxi, Gansu, Ningxia, Qinghai, Xinjiang in west China and the East Sea.
Gas pipelines in the nation total 12,000 km, and networks exist in Sichuan province andChongqing.

Source: Asia Pulse via Iinoil
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