A privately-owned power plant has triggered a national debate by selling electricity to consumers at a lower price than government-set market value. Although this model cannot be copied according to energy experts, it is posing a challenge to State-owned power grid companies and is in line with a public appeal to break the monopoly of State-owned enterprises (SOEs).
The power plant is run by Weiqiao Pioneering Group in Zouping county, Shandong Province. Weiqiao has interests running from garment production to electricity. The group started getting noticed after selling its redundant electricity to nearby factories and households at prices almost one-third lower than national ones, the Xinhua News Agency reported in mid-May.
"The Weiqiao model tells us that it would be very positive to open up the market," said Larry Hsien Ping Lang, a Hong Kong-based economist, told Guangdong TV.
Lang said the State Grid buys electricity from power plants and then sells it to the public. They add nothing to the process, but claim a 39 percent profit margin.
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