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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Business
Factories cope with rising gas costs
    2017-October-31  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

FACTORIES in China’s industrial heartland making everything from steel sheet to tofu and ceramics are struggling with soaring costs or facing closures as they switch to use new gas-powered boilers, industry executives said.

The problems illustrate the burden that is falling on the small and medium-sized manufacturers due to the shift from coal to natural gas.

The city of Tangshan, Hebei Province, set an earlier deadline of Oct. 9 for the conversions and said it would shut companies that did not comply. Tanghsan is China’s biggest steel producing city.

“The price increases everyday. It is hard to say how long we can bear to run the operation,” said a sales manager at Xinyiyuan Steel Corp., a small steel rolling factory in Tangshan. She declined to give her name.

An average 10-ton natural gas boiler costs about 2,531 yuan (US$381) per hour to run versus 909 yuan per hour for the same capacity of coal boiler, according to media calculations based on spot gas and coal prices in China.

Rising demand for natural gas caused by the switch has pushed prices higher, the sources said.

China meets some of its natural gas demand domestically but the country is importing more liquefied natural gas (LNG) to make up for the shortfall. The spot price of LNG in Asia was at US$9 per million British thermal units Friday, up 49 percent from Aug. 25, according to media assessments.

However, even completing the conversion to gas in time has not prevented delays to resuming production.

Tangshan Ruilong Steel Corp. may have a prolonged closure after its newly installed gas-fired boiler failed an inspection, said a Ruilong manager who gave his surname as Wang.

In Henan Province, another manufacturing center, a source at a tofu factory said his costs have jumped 12.5 percent to 18,000 yuan per ton since switching to gas.(SD-Agencies)

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