China's energy transition fueling green productive forces

(Xinhua) 10:33, March 01, 2024

NANJING, Feb. 29 (Xinhua) -- At the assembly plant of Li Auto in the city of Changzhou, east China's Jiangsu Province, over 3,000 kinds of auto parts are orderly collected and carried by automatic guided vehicles and finally assembled into diverse new energy vehicles (NEVs).

The Chinese NEV startup delivered 376,000 cars in 2023, up 182.2 percent year on year. "We plan to deliver 800,000 vehicles and build 2,000 supercharging stations in 2024," said Li Xiang, CEO of the company.

The burgeoning growth of Li Auto and many other peers in Changzhou has transformed the manufacturing hub in the Yangtze River Delta into the "capital of new energy," with the new energy industry generating about 768 billion yuan (about 108.1 billion U.S. dollars) in output value.

"The new energy industry is a winning formula for our development," said Chen Jinhu, Party chief of Changzhou, adding that the city aims to become a world-class new energy industry highland, with the industry's output value exceeding one trillion yuan by 2025.

The success of Li Auto as well as Changzhou is the epitome of how Chinese NEV players and localities are cashing in on the huge opportunities generated by the country's green energy transition.

In recent years, the world's second-largest economy has made great strides in unlocking the potential of the new energy industry as it seeks green and high-quality growth.

Embracing the green development strategy, the economic powerhouse Jiangsu plans to build two offshore clean energy bases with 10-GW generating capacity each by 2027.

Even the major coal-producing regions of Inner Mongolia and Shanxi have been investing heavily in new energy development in a bid to improve the energy mix and reduce carbon emissions.

These efforts are not only sparking the development of green productive forces to inject further momentum into the economy, but also helping the country reduce carbon emissions to achieve its dual carbon goals of peaking carbon emissions before 2030 and reaching carbon neutrality before 2060.

China's new energy industry has seen robust growth in recent years, becoming a new bright spot in the wide economic picture.

Amid the surge in the number of electric vehicles cruising the roads worldwide, China has ranked first globally in NEV sales for the past nine consecutive years, with a share of the global market at over 60 percent.

China is also a major supplier of wind and solar power equipment and power batteries. It has driven down the cost of renewable energy and helped other countries obtain clean, reliable, and more affordable energy, providing 50 percent of the world's wind power equipment and 80 percent of global photovoltaic equipment.

China had its exports of the tech-intensive green trio -- lithium-ion batteries, photovoltaic products, and NEVs -- amounting to 1.06 trillion yuan last year, marking a year-on-year robust increase of 29.9 percent.

Risen Energy, a leading Chinese photovoltaic manufacturer, has a 15-GW production base in Anhui Province, with 70 percent of solar cells and modules produced there exported to overseas markets to bring clean energy to locals.

"Our group has set up 132 subsidiaries globally, providing our products to photovoltaic power stations worldwide," said Yang Qinghong, project manager from Risen Energy Anhui.

China's energy transition has seen great progress after years of heavy investments.

According to the National Energy Administration, the country's total installed capacity of renewable energy topped 1,516 GW at the end of last year, accounting for 51.9 percent of its total installed power generation capacity and contributing to nearly 40 percent of the global installed capacity of renewables.

"As China has been adjusting its industrial and energy structures and promoting energy conservation, more green productive forces are expected to be cultivated, thus realizing a win-win situation for reducing carbon emissions and promoting economic growth," said Lin Weibin, an expert from the China Energy Research Society.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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