China's top economic planner on Saturday urged local authorities to take vigorous measures to ensure adequate supply and steady prices of thermal coal, which is used for power generation.
Local authorities and companies should better adjust the balance between production, delivery and demand of thermal coal in the market and closely monitor the prices to ensure key thermal coal contracts this year trade at the same price level with 2010, according to a notice issued by China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
The notice stressed that coal-producing regions should properly handle the relationship between safe production and steady supply.
Market segmentation and supply limits to other provinces are prohibited, the notice said.
Price inspections will be conducted in some provinces this year and deliberately marking up or hyping up prices would be penalized, according to the notice.
Many of China's thermal power companies have struggled in the face of coal price hikes over the years while state-controlled electricity prices have remained unchanged.