|Published : 13 Apr 2017, 13:14:52|
China wants to promote coal conversion overseas
China’s coal giants want to promote coal conversion overseas, especially as part of China’s “Belt and Road” initiative, according to a global media report.
“We are pushing overseas projects where there are low-cost coal resources,” Mr Zhang said.
Projects that work in China’s state-dominated economy may not be practical elsewhere. Coal conversion has become profitable in China because of an unusual combination of low coal prices relative to state-set gas or petrol prices.
Coal-to-liquids projects normally make economic sense only when oil prices are high or supply is limited. The technology was first developed in Nazi Germany and commercialised in apartheid-era South Africa.
Natural gas prices are set relatively high in China to justify pipelines running thousands of miles from central Asia to population centres in the east. That gives an opening to gas derived from coal, which is projected to supply 12 per cent of China’s gas consumption by 2020.
The switch to gas forms part of Beijing’s Paris agreement pledge for emissions to peak around 2030.