Strive to keep coal prices running in a reasonable range (Rui Finance and Economics)

  Coal is an important primary product related to the national economy and people's livelihood. Stabilizing coal prices is of great significance to stabilizing electricity prices and stabilizing the economy.

A few days ago, the National Development and Reform Commission issued the "Announcement on Clarifying the Price Gouging Behavior of Operators in the Coal Field" (hereinafter referred to as the "Announcement"), which will be implemented on May 1.

The National Development and Reform Commission said that it will pay close attention to the supply and demand situation and price changes in the coal market, strengthen the supervision of the signing and performance of coal medium and long-term contracts, and take effective and effective measures to ensure that coal prices operate within a reasonable range.

  Coal supply and price stability are of great significance

  Coal power accounts for about 60% of China's total power generation, and it is of great significance to ensure the supply and price of coal.

  "Last autumn and winter, coal prices rose sharply, affecting the supply of energy and increasing the cost of economic operation." said the relevant person in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission.

In order to promote the rational return of coal prices, in February of this year, the National Development and Reform Commission issued the "Notice on Further Improving the Coal Market Price Formation Mechanism" (hereinafter referred to as the "Notice"), and on the basis of insisting that coal prices are formed by the market, it proposed that coal (domestic Thermal coal, the same below) the medium and long-term transaction price range is reasonable.

Among them, special emphasis is placed on curbing excessive capital speculation and malicious speculation, and promptly investigating and punishing market entities for fabricating, disseminating information on price increases, and hoarding and other illegal acts of driving up prices.

  "Price gouging is considered to be one of the important reasons for this round of irrational rise in coal prices." The person in charge said, "From the practice of many years, the current price laws, regulations and policies are more principled in the expression of price gouging, and there is a lack of specific regulations. As a result, market players do not have a clear understanding of the illegal boundaries, which can not guide enterprises to operate in compliance with laws and regulations, and it also makes it difficult to identify illegal acts." In response, the National Development and Reform Commission organized special forces to systematically sort out relevant domestic and foreign price violations. The Announcement was drafted and formed on the basis of comprehensive consideration of the opinions of all parties, after listening to the opinions of relevant enterprises and associations in the coal and power industries, and soliciting opinions from relevant departments.

  The person in charge said that the "Announcement" clarifies the red line of supervision and provides clear behavioral guidelines for coal enterprises. Coal enterprises should actively follow them and restrain their own business behavior.

All sectors of society can also request to report to the law enforcement departments for illegal and illegal acts such as price gouging by operators.

  Identify 4 forms of price gouging

  The above-mentioned person in charge stated that the "Announcement" combines the main characteristics and outstanding problems of illegal price gouging in the coal field, and clarifies four types of coal operators' fabrication, dissemination of price increase information, hoarding, and large or disguised large price increases without justifiable reasons. The specific manifestations of price gouging and its comprehensive considerations.

  One is to fabricate price increase information.

It is mainly manifested as fictitious information about tight supply or surge in market demand, fictitious information that other operators have or are preparing to raise prices, fictitious purchase cost and other information that may push up coal price expectations.

  The second is to disseminate information on price increases.

It is mainly manifested in the dissemination of fabricated price increase information, the dissemination of information to call or induce other operators to increase coal prices, and the dissemination of other information that may push up coal price expectations.

  The third is hoarding.

The main manifestation is that the coal produced or purchased is not sold in time, and the amount or period of storage is obviously beyond the normal amount without justifiable reasons.

  Fourth, the prices have been substantially increased without justifiable reasons or in a disguised form.

It is mainly manifested in the case that the coal production and purchase costs have not increased significantly, the price is greatly increased or the price increase is significantly higher than the normal year, and the coal is sold externally; Induce the sales target to entrust it to purchase high-priced coal; increase the coal price in a disguised form by unreasonably increasing transportation costs or charging other fees; Raise coal prices.

  Determine the reasonable range of spot price

  How to judge the "substantial price increase" in price gouging?

  The person in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission said that since the "Notice" has specified a reasonable range of medium and long-term coal transaction prices, this range is based on full consideration of costs, taking into account the upstream and downstream interests of coal and electricity, and properly connecting with the market-based electricity pricing mechanism for coal and electricity. determined later.

Therefore, based on the upper limit of the reasonable range above, any one of the following situations without justifiable reasons can generally be regarded as price gouging: First, the operator's mid- and long-term coal transaction sales price exceeds the medium-term and long-term coal price specified in the relevant national or local documents. The upper limit of the reasonable range of the long-term transaction price; the second is that the coal spot transaction sales price of the operator exceeds 50% of the upper limit of the reasonable range of the medium and long-term transaction price specified in the relevant national or local documents.

  The Price Department of the National Development and Reform Commission recently convened a special meeting of key coal and power companies, industry associations, market information agencies and the National Coal Trading Center to study and judge the coal price situation and to study and strengthen coal price regulation and supervision.

The meeting emphasized that, in accordance with the relevant requirements of the "Notice" and "Announcement", since May 1, the medium and long-term transaction price and spot price of coal have a reasonable range.

Among them, the medium and long-term and spot prices of Qinhuangdao Port’s water coal (5,500 kcal) exceeded 770 yuan and 1,155 yuan per ton, respectively, and the medium and long-term and spot prices of Shanxi coal (5,500 kcal) in the mining process exceeded 570 yuan and 855 yuan per ton, respectively. , Shaanxi coal (5500 kcal) in the medium and long term and spot prices per ton in the mining process exceeded 520 yuan and 780 yuan respectively, and Mengxi coal (5500 kcal) in the medium and long term and spot prices in the mining process exceeded 460 yuan and 690 yuan per ton respectively. Yuan, Mengdong coal (3,500 kcal) in the medium and long-term mining process, the spot price per ton is more than 300 yuan and 450 yuan respectively, if there is no legitimate reason, it can generally be regarded as price gouging.

  The relevant person in charge of the National Development and Reform Commission said that when it is found that the price exceeds the reasonable range, it will immediately carry out a reminder and interview, and if necessary, through investigation, notification and other means to guide the coal price to return to the reasonable range, and if there is suspected price gouging, it will be transferred to the relevant departments. Investigate according to law.

  Liao Ruiling

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