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China's State Council to discuss stimulus plan for new energy industry
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China's top economic planning agency would soon submit a draft support plan of the country's new energy industry to the State Council for approval, the Shanghai Securities News reported Saturday.

Zhou Xi'an, an official of the National Bureau of Energy under the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), was quoted by the newspaper as saying the plan would be unveiled "very soon", without specifying a time table.

The support plan would focus on nuclear power and renewable energy as wind and solar power, Zhou told the newspaper Friday at a national energy forum held in Beijing.

Liang Zhipeng, head of the new and renewable energy division of the Bureau, said the draft had to go through discussions within the NDRC after opinions were sought from firms, local NDRC branches, and relevant ministries.

Zhou said the NDRC had finished discussions on the plan.

He also said China is aiming to raise the proportion of renewable energy, excluding hydropower, in the country's total energy consumption to more than 6 percent by 2020, up from the current 1.5 percent.

He added that the country would give financial support to research and development on technologies that are key to self-made equipment for nuclear and wind power facilities.

However, he did not reveal the amount of investment the country is planning for the new energy development.

China has unveiled support packages for 10 key industries, part of moves to stimulate the slowing economy. The new energy sector was not included in previous plans despite high hopes for such stimulus.

(Xinhua News Agency May 23, 2009)

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