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Coal power slowdown reveals positive signals for transformation

Coal power slowdown reveals positive signals for transformation

  Coal-fired electricity consumption is also one of the indicators for observing macroeconomics. Both data growth in the past two months and the first two months of this year have been declining, and the market is therefore increasingly worried about the economic downturn. In this regard, experts pointed out that the use of coal-fired power to slow down, on the one hand, is a reflection of economic slowdown, on the other hand, it also reveals a positive signal that the industrial structure is being adjusted. In the future, reforms and policy adjustments will be made to optimize the structure, improve people's livelihood, foster new growth drivers, and achieve sustainable economic development.
  Coal power data leads to concern
  According to the data released by the National Energy Administration in 2014, the annual growth rate of various electricity consumption has dropped significantly, even reaching a 10-year low. From January to February 2015, the total electricity consumption of the whole society reached 845.4 billion kWh, a year-on-year increase of 2.5%. The growth rate dropped by 2 percentage points from the same period of the previous year, a 23-month low, including electricity consumption in February. Negative growth occurred. In February, the total electricity consumption of the whole society was 359.5 billion kWh, a year-on-year decrease of 6.3%.
  Shan Haoguo, director of the Institute of Economics and Energy Supply and Demand of the State Grid Energy Research Institute, said that the year-on-year growth rate of electricity consumption in the first two months has further declined, which fully confirms the tremendous pressure on China's current economy.
  At the same time, the national coal production and sales volume and imports are also falling. Statistics show that from January to February this year, the national coal production and sales volume was 570 million tons and 508 million tons, respectively, both down about 4%. However, coal stocks remained high and coal prices continued to decline. According to the data released by the General Administration of Customs, since 2015, the cumulative import volume in January and February has been 32.04 million tons, which is less than the monthly import volume in January last year.
  “Since 2015, the downward pressure on the domestic economy has increased. In the first two months, the average daily coal consumption of key power plants decreased by more than 300,000 tons, and the output of crude steel in key steel enterprises decreased by 2% year-on-year. Coal consumption decreased accordingly.” China Coal Industry Lu Yaohua, vice president of the association, predicts that the situation of oversupply in the national coal market will be difficult to change this year. The downward pressure on coal prices is still relatively large, and the whole industry will face an overall loss situation.
  Energy saving and consumption reduction is the weight of the structure
  Although the decline in coal-fired electricity consumption reflects the grim reality of the economic downturn, it also reveals a positive signal that the transformation and upgrading are accelerating and the structure is being adjusted.
  Statistics show that from January to February, industrial electricity consumption increased by only 1.3% year-on-year, but the growth rate of electricity consumption in the tertiary industry is significantly faster than that in the secondary industry. “This reflects that the industrial structure is undergoing positive changes and the economic growth rate is decreasing. The economic transformation and upgrading has provided space."
  The decline in coal production and sales is also the inevitable result of industrial transformation and upgrading. In recent years, China's ecological construction has continued to increase, clean alternative energy has developed rapidly, overcapacity industries and high-energy-consuming industries have been phased out, new industries have continued to emerge, and coal consumption reduction has become inevitable.
  "Environmental pollution caused by improper use of coal has attracted more and more attention from all walks of life. In fact, coal consumption reduction, especially in key regions and key industries, has started." Li Ting, chief consultant of Ruineng Consulting, said. With the support of policies, alternative energy sources such as hydropower, nuclear power, gas, wind and solar energy have developed rapidly.
  Experts pointed out that under the new normal, economic development should change from traditional scale expansion to intrinsic growth. Therefore, it is no longer possible to take the old road of high energy consumption, high pollution and low efficiency, and to build low carbon and high quality by adjusting structure and turning mode. An efficient Chinese economic upgrade, and energy conservation and consumption reduction is an important starting point for restructuring, and an inevitable choice for sustainable economic development. Among them, one of the direct manifestations of the year-on-year decline in energy consumption per 10,000 yuan of GDP is the lack of growth in energy consumption such as coal and electricity.
  Adjust the structure, stabilize growth, balance development
  Under the new normal, the economy must maintain stable growth while improving operational quality and efficiency. Zhang Junxuan, deputy director of the Development Research Center of the State Council, believes that if the structure is further distorted in order to maintain a high growth rate, the contradictions are further accumulated, the risks are further increased, and the environment is further damaged. That is not worth the candle. On the contrary, if the structure is optimized, the contradictions are resolved, the people's livelihood is improving, and new growth drivers are forming, then even if the growth rate is lower, it is good.
  In order to achieve a stable and balanced development of the restructuring, Premier Li Keqiang proposed to maintain the medium-to-high-speed growth and move toward the mid-to-high-end “double goals”, adhere to the stable policy and promote the “double combination” of reform and restructuring, and create mass entrepreneurship and innovation. Increase the "double engine" of public goods and public services.
  How can we better balance the two? "In the case of insisting on not adopting large-scale and simple demand stimulation, we must persist in exerting efforts from both demand and supply." Zhang Junsheng suggested that the first is to further increase the investment demand that can benefit the people's livelihood and adjust the structure. Second, through reform, we should release the comparative advantage or late-comer advantage that China has in the supply of factors due to institutional defects. Third, we must form an institutional and policy environment conducive to the growth of new industries through reform and policy adjustment. . Finally, we must accelerate reforms and build a system and social environment that is conducive to mass entrepreneurship and innovation.

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