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Speech at the Opening Ceremony(Xie Zhenhua)


  Respected Vice Premier Zeng, Vice chairs, Members and experts,


  Good Afternoon


  I am very happy to attend 2007 AGM of China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development Phase IV to discuss with many Chinese and international friends, old and new, about relevant environment and development issues in China. This year is the 16th year of the Council. As one of the founders and a Member for the past three phases of the Council, I witness the development of the Council. It is a great honor for me to continue the participation in the Council activities under the leadership of Vice Premier Zeng Peiyan, also Chairman of the Council and I am willing to make new contributions.


  The Council has constantly put forward recommendations for sustainable and scientific development of China and played an important role over the past years. This fully demonstrates that the Chinese Government is willing to listen to the insights of both Chinese and international experts in the implementation of sustainable development strategy and learn the experience and lessons of foreign countries. At the same time, it also reflects the fact that China has always adhered to the reform and open up policy. A moment ago, Vice Premier Zeng Peiyan made an import speech. He expounded major strategic arrangements for the building of a socialist society with Chinese characteristics set forth by the 17th Congress of CCCPC, introduced the scientific outlook on development and the policies China is taken with some development. He also put forward requirements for the future work of the Council. We must carefully implement his instructions in the activities of the Council Phase IV.


  Taking this opportunity, I would like to briefly introduce to each Member and experts here about energy saving and emission reduction in China. The Outline of the 11th Five-Year Plan of China for National Economic and Social Development clearly requires: “we take resources conservation as a basic national policy; we will develop circular economy, protect eco environment and accelerate the development of a resource saving and environment-friendly society”. It also identifies the binding targets during the 11th Five-Year plan period, i.e. 20% reduction of energy consumption per unit GDP and 10% reduction of total emission of major pollutants as compared with that of 2005.


  Both the central and local governments have taken energy saving and emission reduction as an important measure for adjusting economic structure, shifting development mode, protecting eco-environment and addressing climate change over the past few years with more efforts in this field. Early this year, the State Council convened a national teleconference on energy saving and emission reduction. Premier Wen Jiabao made arrangements for the work of energy saving and emission reduction. The Central government has set up a National Leading Group on Climate Change and Energy Saving & Emission Reduction with Premier Wen as group leader and Vice Premier Zeng Peiyan and State Councilor Tang Jiaxuan as vice group leaders. It has approved the comprehensive work program for energy saving and emission reduction with 45 countermeasures in 10 areas, which fragment energy saving and emission reduction targets down to local governments and key enterprises who have signed target responsibility documents with the central authority. China has established the statistics, monitoring and examination system for energy saving and emission reduction, taken the achievement of energy saving and emission reduction as an important component for the examination of the performance of the heads of local governments and state-owned enterprises and accountability system being in place. Each province and relevant departments have made their corresponding energy saving and emission reduction work program or implementation suggestions.


  In order to achieve energy saving target, we are taking the following measures:


  1Make more efforts in restructuring to curb excessive growth of the industries with high energy consumption and emissions. China focuses more on the development of primary and tertiary industries to raise the proportions of service industry and high-tech industries in national economy. China is adjusting the energy mix, actively develop renewable energy sources with wide application of clean coal. During the “11th Five-Year Plan” period, it is expected that the proportion of the added value of service industry to GDP will go up by 3 percentage and that of high-tech industry against total industry by 5 percentage. The percentage of renewable energy in energy mix will go up from 7.5% to 10% so as to raise the quality and benefits of development.


  China will accelerate the phasing out of lag-behind productivity of 13 industries including power, iron and steel, building materials, electrolytic aluminum and coal according to law. It is expected that during the “11th Five-Year Plan” period, lag-behind productivity in the following sectors will be closed down or phased out: 50 million KW from small thermal power plants, 100 million tons of iron and 55 million tons of steel, 250 million tons of cement and 6.5 million tons of paper-making. The Regulations on the Rewarding Funds of the Central Budget for the Promotion of Phasing Out of Lag-Behind Productivity will be formulated and the establishment of incentive mechanism for the phasing out of lag-behind productivity will be speeded up.


  2Enhance the implementation of key energy saving projects. China will continue the implementation of 10 key energy saving projects, including reform of coal furled boilers, co-generation, petroleum conservation and alternatives, green lighting and energy saving buildings. Incentive mechanism will be carried out for corporate technical reform for energy saving in line with Interim Regulations on the Rewarding Funds of the Central Budget for the Energy Saving Technical Reform.


  3Strengthen energy saving in key areas. China is going to mobilize 1000 key enterprises with large consumption of energy to carry out energy saving activities, energy audit and develop energy saving plan. It will make public the energy audit and utilization report of the 1000 enterprises and urge them to meet energy efficiency target. China will promulgate and carry out Technical Specifications for the Inspection and Acceptance of the Quality of Building Energy Saving Projects and intensify the supervision on the enforcement of compulsory energy saving standard by new buildings.


  4Greatly develop circular economy. According to the principle of “Reduce, reuse and recycle”, China will make more efforts in carrying out the trial work of circular economy and develop a number of advanced models in circular economy. It will strive for the development of circular economy systems at enterprise level, industrial park level, waste recycling and whole society level. Yesterday, China approved the second group of 92 organizations for the trial of circular economy, which indicates the official commencement of such trial.


  5Gradually improve policy mechanism conducive to energy saving and emission reduction. For industrial policies, China has revised the Guiding Catalogue on the Adjustment of Industrial Structure and adjusted the Guiding Catalogue for the Industries with Foreign Investment. It will strictly control the projects with high energy consumption and emissions. China will implement more stringent standards in energy and water consumption, environment, safety, comprehensive use of resources and quality as well as technology for the construction of projects, focusing on energy consumption assessment and EIA approval. In pricing policy, China will gradually adjust fuel price, cut down the on-grid price of the electricity from small thermal power plants, carry out the power pricing policy that encourages the construction of desulphurization facilities and development of renewable energy sources and make more efforts in the implementation of differentiated power price. In financial and taxation policy, China will adjust the base of resource tax of some mineral resources and raise the consumption taxes of such products as gasoline and diesel, big emission vehicles, throw-away wooden chopsticks and solid wood floorboard. China will remove or reduce the export tax refund for the products with high energy consumption and high emissions and impose export tariff on some goods. China will adjust and issue government procurement list for energy saving and environment-labelling products and carry out compulsory procurement of some energy saving products. China will promulgate and carry out the newly revised Regulations on the Identification of Comprehensive Use of Resources Encouraged by the State. The Chinese government will continue the improvement and vigorously promote new mechanisms such as power saving dispatch, contract energy management, energy efficiency label and authentication of energy saving products.


  6Strengthen legal development. China will accelerate the development of relevant laws, regulations and standards. Energy Conservation LawRevised Drafthas been reviewed and passed. It is expected that Circular Economy Law will be promulgated in the near future after review and approval. Next year, it is expected that a number of supporting regulations and standards will be promulgated.


  7Continue publicity. The authority will organize and carry out large scale topic publicity activities including National Energy Saving Publicity Week, “June 5 World Environment Day” and “Nationwide Campaign on Energy Saving and Emission Reduction” as well as science popularization activities with the topic of energy saving and emission reduction. With these activities, it is expected that the social environment for energy saving and emission reduction with actions from now on and beginning from doing minor things will be formed and lasted for ever, mobilizing the initiatives of the whole society.


  We are willing to listen to policy recommendations of each Member and expert on energy saving and emission reduction, higher efficiency and climate change in China during this AGM.


  As an international high-profile policy consultation institution, the Council has unique expert resources and advantages. The experience over the past years shows that many important policy recommendations of the Council have played an active role in helping the Chinese government to develop and adjust relevant national policies. As a Chinese Vice Chairman of the Council, I am willing to work with you to promote new progress of the Council so that it will make more contributions.


  Thank you.


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