China to introduce a carbon tax by 2015
In a bid to lower emissions and reduce pollution levels, the Chinese Ministry of Finance announced that upcoming tax reforms would include a levy on carbon emission activities by 2015. While no implementation date has been revealed, the tax will be governed under local authorities. The fee is expected to begin at around 10-yuan (around €1.20) per ton of carbon emitted and rise to 50-yuan (around €6) a ton by 2020. Aside from the tax on carbon, China is looking into taxing energy-intensive products as well as introducing resources usage tax on coal and water in the near future. The latest carbon tax policies complement the country’s previous announcement last month of capping energy consumption by 4 billion tons of coal equivalents as part of the nation’s five-year energy development plan and China’s pilot regional carbon emission trading schemes set to commence in the fall. In this regard, the Guangdong Development and Reform Commission released a preliminary list of 239 companies that will be involved in the province’s emissions trading scheme. Among the companies covered by the regulation there are state-owned oil companies Sinopec and CNOOC as well as other power companies such as Datang and Huaneng, building materials firm Sinoma and privately owned cement producer Tapai.