China eyes coal output boost, higher power prices to ease shortages

BEIJING/SINGAPORE, Oct 8 (Reuters) – China has ordered its two top coal regions to boost output and will allow coal-fired power utilities to charge customers higher prices as the country battles its worst power crunch in years.

Inner Mongolia and Shanxi told coal miners to lift combined annual production capacity by more than 160 million tonnes, while China’s cabinet said market coal-fired power prices may now fluctuate up to 20% from base rates, an increase on previous limits, or more for high energy consuming sectors.

The pricing adjustment is designed to prevent high energy consumption, state media reported, adding that prices for residential and agricultural users, as well as public welfare initiatives, would be kept stable.

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Source: Reuters