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Brussels in brief, WW200911

China: Global wind industry calls for robust policy framework, better grid access and level playing field


Global and Chinese wind energy bodies are calling for improved framework conditions for spurring wind power development in China.

In a memorandum presented to senior Chinese policy makers in October in Beijing, the Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC), the Chinese Wind Energy Industries Association (CREIA) and the Chinese Wind Energy Association (CWEA) have identified key areas that they agreed to focus on for their cooperation.

These include the introduction of ambitious national targets for wind energy development, improved transmission networks and grid access, as well as the creation of a level playing field on which international players can compete with domestic manufacturers and developers.

In the past four years, China’s wind energy industry has experienced tremendous growth. By the end of 2008, China’s installed capacity doubled for the fourth year in a row, reaching 12.2 GW, and in 2009, China has become the world’s largest market for new installed wind capacity globally.

“However, because of this rapid growth and prosperous development, there are also some issues which need to be addressed urgently and effectively to ensure the industry’s healthy long term growth,” reads the paper, which was signed in early November. “GWEC, and our partners in China, CREIA and CWEA, are supporting the Chinese government to address the issues on the healthy development of wind energy and to exchange ideas and information from international best-practices.”

In addition to the issues referring to a policy framework, the paper calls for a strengthening of national Chinese research and development programmes, as well as a better protection of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), in order to stimulate technological innovation.

The paper also spells out recommendations on how a more level playing field can be created for international and domestic players, in order to ensure better access to smaller utilities as well as private and foreign investors. It warns that the current practice of excluding private investment in favour of the state owned enterprises will do damage to the wind energy market in the long term. 

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