29 Oct 2010 12:48

Beijing Municipality to hold public hearing on gas price hike

Shanghai. October 29. INTERFAX-CHINA - Beijing Municipality plans to hold a public hearing regarding a proposed natural gas price hike on Nov. 12, the Beijing Municipal branch of the National Development and Reform Commission announced on its Web site on Oct. 28.

According to the announcement, the commission will propose to raise local residential gas prices by either 11 percent to RMB 0.23 ($0.034) per cubic meter or by 13 percent to RMB 0.27 ($0.040) per cubic meter.

In June, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) raised the benchmark ex-work price of natural gas by RMB 0.23 ($0.034) per cubic meter and allowed for gas producers to hike that price by additional 10 percent.

On Sept. 28, Beijing Municipality raised local gas prices for industrial and commercial consumers by RMB 0.33 ($0.048) per cubic meter. However, China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC), the municipality's primary gas supplier, surpassed the 10 percent price hike barrier after it lifted the city's gate prices for residential consumers by RMB 0.23 ($0.034) per cubic meter.

The Beijing branch of the NDRC expects that the municipality will consume 7.6 billion cubic meters of natural gas for the whole of 2010, an increase of 17 percent year-on-year. By 2015, the municipality is expected to have a natural gas demand 15 billion cubic meters, the commission added.