China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. (Sinopec) is seeking private capital to develop, transport and sell shale gas, Shanghai Securities News reported Wednesday, citing a source close to the company.
Chairman Fu Chengyu is leading an initiative to diversify Sinopec’s ownership structure in line with government efforts to open monopolies to non-state capital.
Sinopec is expected to unveil details of its shale gas business at the end of June, the report said.
Shale gas is a type of natural gas trapped in shale formations deep in the earth’s surface. As a clean and efficient energy source, it has become increasingly important in the search for alternative fuel.
Each shell gas well is expected to cost Sinopec 86 million yuan (US$13.96 million) but the company expects to cut the amount by 30 percent in three years.
Market competition will bring down China’s shale gas prices to world levels, Jiang Xinmin, a government researcher, was quoted as saying.
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