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Seven wind power bases to be set up by 2020
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China plans to build seven wind power bases with a minimum capacity of 10 gigawatts (gW) each by 2020, in a move to dramatically increase the use of the clean energy.

The seven bases are: Jiuquan in Gansu province, Hami in Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, Hebei province, western Jilin province, eastern Inner Mongolia, western Inner Mongolia, and Jiangsu province, Shi Pengfei, vice-president of Chinese Wind Energy Association, told a conference yesterday.

Once completed in 2020, the seven bases will have combined capacity of around 120 gW, when the country's total power capacity is projected to be 1,500 gW, said Shi.

Construction of these bases would require an investment of around 1 trillion yuan, he said.

China's wind energy resources are mainly located in the northern regions and the coastal areas. Construction of large-scale wind power bases in these areas is in line with the healthy development of the industry, said Shi.

Besides onshore wind power, which has seen rapid growth in China, the country has also started to develop offshore wind power projects. China is now building its first offshore wind power project, the Shanghai Donghai Offshore Wind Farm, which is also the first offshore project outside Europe.

China's wind power sector has witnessed 100 percent annual growth in the past three years. The country's wind power installed capacity is expected to exceed 30 gW by the end of 2010, up from 12 gW last year, Shi Lishan, deputy director of the new energy department under the National Energy Administration told China Daily earlier.

In order to achieve this target, China needs to invest an additional 100 billion yuan at least in the sector, he said.

Many domestic companies are accelerating their development in wind power sector. China's five major power companies, together with other companies like China Shenhua Group and China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group have all started their wind power projects.

There are also an increasing number of foreign companies entering China's wind power market. Vestas from Denmark, which is the world's leading wind turbine manufacturer, earlier this year opened a plant in Inner Mongolia to increase its manufacturing capacity in China. The company is also in the process of opening a new office to cover offshore wind power business in the country.

As the most developed energy resources among all the new energies, wind power will account for an important part in the forthcoming new energy stimulus package, said Li Junfeng, deputy director of Energy Research Institute under the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC)

The NDRC and other ministries are drafting a stimulus program for China's new energy industry.

(China Daily June 30, 2009)

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