By Michael Komesaroff
Moaning about the price of iron ore is an annual ritual for China’s steel producers. But with steel demand collapsing at home and abroad, Beijing is optimistic that it finally has the bargaining power to force the global mining giants to slash the price of contracted iron ore.
If only it were that simple.
By Arthur Kroeber
After years of procrastinating, China has finally imposed a fuel tax. The new levy, slapped on sales of petrol and diesel from January 1, is a strong signal that Beijing will reform energy prices.
Just six months ago, with the crude price at US$150, the question was how long China could sustain subsidies to keep retail fuel prices low. But with the price of crude oil now down around US$40 a barrel, the discussion of Chinese energy pricing policy has reversed course.