The State Council, China's cabinet, on Wednesday issued a guideline promoting the coordinated and steady development of the natural gas sector.
Stepping up the development and use of natural gas is crucial for reforming China's energy production and consumption, and building a clean, low-carbon, safe and efficient modern energy system, the guideline said.
The country should effectively solve the problem of unbalanced and insufficient development of the sector to deal with the natural gas storage and production capacity, realize balanced supply and demand, make facilities safe and efficient, and improve the market-oriented mechanism.
Last winter, some provincial regions in China experienced a short supply of natural gas, and residents in some areas even suffered supply failures. In the first half of this year, natural gas consumption rose by 17.5 percent year on year.
The guideline said that China will improve the systems for the production, supply, storage, and sales of natural gas and promote the dynamic balance of supply and demand.
Measures in this respect include reinforcing domestic natural gas exploitation, improving the mechanism for overseas supply from diverse entities, creating a multi-layered storage system, and enhancing the connectivity of natural gas infrastructure.
For the coordinated development of the sector, the country should accurately forecast natural gas demand, offer timely early warnings for possible supply shortages and import risks, increase the number of natural gas sources in local areas, and improve the emergency supply system, the document said.