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Olympics Negatively Affecting Chinese Coal Market

The Beijing Olympics will have negative impact on the Chinese coal market, said Market, a newspaper under the ownership of the People’s Daily on June 27. Supplies of coal will likely decrease due to pressure from the international community on human rights and air quality in China. The authorities are expected to shut down mines to reduce accidents. Coal trucks will either be turned away or re-directed at check points leading to Beijing. For example, the Hebei provincial government has banned cargo trucks from entering into Beijing between July 1 and September 20.

Source: Market, June 27, 2008

Yum! Brands Inc. Cracks Down on Corruption in its China Operations

With speedy expansion into the China market, Yum! Brands Inc. is facing a rise in the number of business frauds and has launched a crackdown on internal corruption. The latest dismissal took place in a Pizza Hut store in Shanghai in mid-June where an employee was dismissed as a result of forging a fake financial statement.

According to statistics disclosed by Yum! Brands Inc., by the end of 2007, there were 2,100 KFC stores, including 300 opened in 2007, while the total number of Pizza Hut stores reached 300 including, 100 new stores opened in 2007. The revenue of Yum! Brands Inc. in China reached 21.5 billion yuan and its profits grew by 30 percent, accounting for 1/3 of its profits worldwide.

Source: China Business, June 23, 2008

Thousands of Reservoirs Damaged During Sichuan Earthquake

According to the Sichuan Earthquake Relief authorities, the total of reservoirs damaged during the May 12 earthquake has reached 1,996, with an additional 193 reservoirs added June 26.  All of these reservoirs have now operated at much lower water levels. 68 of them have been completely drained out of concerns of imminent dam break and over 900 are under repairs.

Source: Xinhua, June 26, 2008

China to Increase Oil and Electricity Price

National Development and Reform Commission issued a notice stating that Oil and Electricity price will increase starting June 20. The notice said that the increase would exclude three provinces (Sichuan, Shanxi, and Gansu) which were affected by the earth quake.

China has been imposing the government controlled oil pricing system with supplemental funding from the government to keep the oil price low. The recent increase was resulted from the pressure of the worldwide oil price surge.

Source: BBC, June 19, 2008

Reservoirs May Flood Yellow River This Year

The Yellow River is likely to flood this year, warned China Meteorological Administration on June 16, 2008. Rainfall is expected to increase by 20 to 50 percent compared with previous years. The last flood in the Yellow River occurred back in 1982. “The flood situation is very severe due to dangerous reservoirs and hidden safety crises,”  said China Meteorological Administration. The Yellow River is China’s second largest with 5,464 km in lengths.

Source: Xinhua, June 16, 2008

State Imposes Coal Ceiling Price

On June 19, 2008 China State Development and Reform Commission announced temporary price ceiling for coal. Effective December 31, 2008, the June 19 settlement price for coal used for power generation will become the temporary ceiling price. The purpose of this price intervention is claimed to “prevent price hikes of coal and electricity, and to promote coordinated, stable and healthy development of coal and power industry.”

Source: Xinhua, June 20, 2008

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