BEIJING, March 30 China's coal-fired power plants
made a profit of 1.34 billion yuan ($196 million) in the first
two months of this year, down 32.6 percent from an year earlier,
the National Development and Reform Commission said on Monday.
But power suppliers, or grid operators who control both power
transmission and distribution networks, lost 2.46 billion yuan in
the January-February period, compared with a profit of 5.64
billion yuan a year earlier, the commission said in a release on
its website (www.ndrc.gov.cn).
It did not provide any explanation for the declines.
Chinese power generating firms, which on average rely on
coal-fired power plants for 80 percent of production, have warned
or reported losses for 2008 due to a sustained increase in coal
China Power Investment Corp, one of China's five major
state-owned power generating groups, made a loss of 300-400
million yuan a month in January and February despite declining
coal prices, a company executive had said. [ID: nPEK23336]
Power firms had refused to sign any deals in the annual talks
in December with coal miners who asked for higher coal prices due
to rising production costs and a tax increase.
But coal supplies to power plants appeared to have not been
interrupted as coal shipments continued despite prices not being
fixed, industry officials said.
(Reporting by Jim Bai, Editing by Jacqueline Wong)