China will play a positive role in the global development of gas, the International
Energy Agency’s (IEA) Executive Director, Maria Van der Hoeven has said in Beijing
on 11 September, 2012 when launching a new IEA report: Gas Pricing and Regulation,
China’s challenges and IEA experiences.In line with its aim to meet growing energy
demand while shifting away from coal, China has set an ambitious goal of doubling
its use of natural gas from 2011 levels by 2015. Prospects are good for significant
new supplies – both domestic and imported, conventional and unconventional – to come
online in the medium-term, but notable challenges remain, particularly concerning
gas pricing and the institutional and regulatory landscape.
While China’s circumstances are, in many respects unique, some current issues are
similar to those a number of IEA countries have faced. This report highlights some
key challenges China faces in its transition to greater reliance on natural gas, then
explores in detail relevant experiences from IEA countries, particularly in the United
Kingdom, the Netherlands, and the United States as well as the European Union (EU).
Preliminary suggestions about how lessons learned in other countries could be applied
to China’s situation are offered as well.
The aim of this report is to provide stakeholders in China with a useful reference
as they consider decisions about the evolution of the gas sector in their country.
The report is funded by the UK Strategic Programme Fund programme , and the EU delegation
in Beijing and the World Bank have provided in-kind contributions. The project is
supported by the Chinese government and co-implemented by China 5E.