BEIJING - Privately-held enterprises are playing a bigger role in China's energy sector, which has been long dominated by state-owned businesses, a report Sunday from state-run Xinhua news agency said.
Data from the China Petroleum and Chemical Federation showed 32 private enterprises had entered China's oil mining industry by August 2012, as well as nine in the natural-gas sector and 64 in commercial activities related to oil and gas exploitation, it said.
The higher profile of the private sector came after the State Council issued new guidelines in May 2010 to encourage private investment in the industry, a report this weekend by China National Petroleum Corp. said.
Some 877 private enterprises are involved in processing of crude oil and oil-related products, including 50 privately-owned refineries, with a combined capacity accounting for 7.1% of the country's total, the Xinhua report said.
Six private enterprises were included in the national strategic oil reserve storage system for the first time in 2011, it added.