China might bring auto makers and paper manufacturers into its national carbon market from the beginning, in addition to six other sectors planned so far, a senior climate official told a conference this week, according to national media.
The NDRC has previously identified the power, metallurgical, non-ferrous metals, building materials, chemical and aviation sectors as the main candidates to be covered from the beginning, although no final decision has been made.
“We hope to start trial trading with the 6+2 industries, and from 2019 to lower the coverage threshold to include more companies and more industries,” Jiang Zhaoli, a senior climate change official at the NDRC, told a conference this week, according to the National Business Daily newspaper.
China is also planning to introduce a carbon tax after 2020, Jiang said, although he offered no further details on how the tax would work or which sectors it would cover.
Jiang is among the key officials designing China’s national carbon market, which is scheduled to kick off in late 2016 or early 2017.
The Ministry of Finance has long been in favour of a carbon tax over an ETS, but the NDRC – which is the agency in charge of China’s climate policy – is staunchly backing an emissions market.
Government officials expect detailed rules for the ETS to be finalised by the end of this year, and although not final, the option of expanding the number of sectors included from the outset indicates that the NDRC is eager to bring in as many emission-intensive sectors as practically possible early on to allow them time to gain experience before the ETS is meant to start biting in earnest from 2020.
By Stian Reklev – email@example.com