China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NRDC) is preparing a draft reform plan for the country’s state-controlled oil and gas companies that is expected to be released by the end of this year. The plan aims to ease controls on market entry in all parts of the industry.
According to a report at Caixin, the country’s three massive state-owned enterprises — China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC); China Petrochemical Corp. (NYSE: SNP), or Sinopec; and China National Offshore Oil Corp., traded in the United States as CNOOC Ltd. (NYSE: CEO) — have launched separate reform plans over the past several years seeking to attract private investors and consolidating businesses, but the pace has slowed as the companies have been waiting for the central government to issue an overall reform plan.
The reform plan is expected to liberalize mining rights, crude oil imports and pipeline operation, in addition to relaxing state control on sales of refined products and the pump price of gasoline. A senior researcher at a Beijing-based think tank told Caixin, “The oil and gas sector is in urgent need of a top-down reform design to guide market reforms covering the entire industry chain..”