Thu, Apr 19, 2018 - Page 11 News List

Energy policy same, despite fears

By Kuo Chia-erh  /  Staff reporter

The Ministry of Economic Affairs yesterday said its energy policy remains unchanged, after business groups expressed concern about the risk of unstable electricity supplies.

The ministry’s main target to increase the proportion of thermal power to 80 percent of the nation’s total power supply would stay the same, Minister of Economic Affairs Shen Jong-chin (沈榮津) told the legislature in Taipei.

Under the nuclear-free homeland policy, the government aims to raise the contribution of renewable energy to 20 percent of the nation’s electricity supply, increase gas-fired power to half and reduce coal-fired power to 30 percent by 2025.

While the goal remains unchanged, the ministry would consider adjusting the proportion of gas-fired power and coal-fired power to reflect people’s concerns, Shen said.

Asked if the development of “green” energy resources would lead to electricity price hikes, Shen said that adjustments of utility rates should be reasonable and competitive, compared with neighboring nations.

Shen’s remarks came after newly appointed Chinese National Federation of Industries (全國工業總會) chairman William Wong (王文淵) earlier in the day said that the government’s initiatives to phase out nuclear power by 2025 might put pressure on economic development, with tight energy supply posing a major risk.

Wong, chairman of Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團), also did not agree with the government’s attempt to replace coal-fired power with natural gas, saying that energy diversification is a global trend to ensure stable power supply.

It is not difficult for the government to find a solution to the so-called “five shortages,” such as shortages of water and skilled labor in the industrial sector, he added.

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