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Services sector boosts consumption of electricity

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Via China Daily

Workers check power transmission lines in Mingguang, Anhui province. [Photo by Song Weixing/For China Daily]

Power consumption in China saw steady growth in 2019 driven by a surging need for electricity in the tertiary sector, an industry report showed on Tuesday.

According to a report by the China Electricity Council, total power consumption in 2019 increased 4.5 percent year-on-year to 7.23 trillion kilowatt-hour.

Electricity consumed in the tertiary sector saw rapid growth of 9.5 percent year-on-year to 1.19 trillion kWh last year. Power consumption in the tertiary sector contributed 33.1 percent to China’s total power consumption growth in 2019, 10.1 percentage points higher compared with that in 2018.

Yu Chongde, vice-chair and secretary-general of CEC, said: “China’s rapid development of technology-backed emerging industries like big data and artificial intelligence has made the tertiary sector a major contributor to China’s power consumption growth.”

The contribution of innovative industries to China’s total power consumption is likely to continue in the following years, Yu said.

“We also predict power consumption growth to fall between 4 to 5 percent in 2020,” Yu said.

Among all categories in the tertiary sector, power consumption in industries like rental, commercial services, real estate and retail has projected double-digit growth, while power consumption in information transportation/software and information technology services has seen a 16.2 percent year-on-year growth, the report showed.

Compared with the rapidly growing need for electricity from the tertiary sector, power consumption in the secondary sector, which accounted for a major part of total power consumption in China last year, has seen slower growth.

Power consumption in the secondary sector hit 4.94 trillion kWh last year, up 3.1 percent year-on-year. It accounted for 68.3 percent of total power consumed last year in China, down 0.9 percentage points compared with that in 2018.

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Power consumed in the secondary sector contributed 47.9 percent to China’s total power consumption growth last year.

Han Xiaoping, chief researcher at industry and energy website china5e.com, said China’s manufacturing sector is undergoing a fast-track transformation to becoming more energy-efficient, backed by fast developing innovative technologies, which partly contributed to the slower growth.

The report also showed China’s rapid development in green energy.

Power generated from non-fossil energy hit 2.39 trillion kWh last year, up 10.4 percent year-on-year. It accounted for 32.6 percent of China’s total power generation, up 1.7 percentage points compared with that of 2018.

Last year, generation of water power, nuclear power, wind power attached to the State grid, and solar power attached to the State grid have grown 5.7 percent, 18.2 percent, 10.9 percent, and 26.5 percent year-on-year respectively.


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