China is carrying out a series of energy consumption investigations focussed on energy intensive consuming sectors such as steel.
The Asian country hopes to decrease the energy consumed per CNY 10,000 ($1,445) of GDP by 15% by the end of 2020, and control total annual energy consumption under 5 billion metric tonnes of standard coal-equivalent.
In 2015, that would have equated to 4.3 billion tonnes, according to Kallanish Energy's sister publication, Kallanish.
The central government has begun conducting annual inspections on energy consumption, and provinces failing to hit targets could see approvals stopped for high-energy consuming projects.
Although the policy has a less direct impact on steel than capacity closures, it is another factor supressing steel industry investment.
The Economy and Information Commission (EIC) published its 2017 inspection priorities in early March, laying out specific inspection procedures for the steel, cement and glassmaking industries.
According to the plan, EIC will check each steelmaker’s average energy consumption level and set limits which should be followed locally. Local authorities can also conduct their own investigations on the same basis.