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Oil producers to pay more windfall tax
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China will charge the nation's oil producers 60 billion yuan in taxes this year on their windfall from soaring crude prices.


That is 33 percent more than the 45 billion yuan Chinese oil producers paid last year, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) said in a statement on its website yesterday.


Windfall tax payments reached 41 billion yuan in the first three quarters of 2007, the NDRC said.


China introduced the oil levy in March 2006 as crude prices advanced, charging oil producers the additional tax on each barrel of oil they sell for more than $40. Crude oil in New York climbed to a record $99.29 a barrel on November 21.


The government would use the windfall tax payments to subsidize refiners and other industries whose fuel costs have surged, the NDRC said. The government controls fuel prices to prevent inflation from accelerating. Refineries in China have been running at a loss after crude prices gained.


China paid 21 billion yuan of such subsidies last year and payments so far this year have reached 42 billion yuan, the NDRC said.


PetroChina Co, Sinopec and CNOOC Ltd are the nation's three biggest oil producers. PetroChina and Sinopec are also the nation's two biggest refiners.


(China Daily December 7, 2007)

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