China Power Output Rises to Four-Month High as Industry Expands

China’s power output rose to the highest in four months in December as industrial production in the world’s largest energy user grew more than forecast.

Electricity production increased to 432.7 billion kilowatt-hours, the most since August, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed today. That’s up 7.6 percent from the same period last year. Power generation climbed 4.7 percent over the year to 4.82 trillion kilowatt-hours, down from 12 percent growth in 2011 as the nation’s economy slowed.

Industrial output expanded by a more-than-expected 10.3 percent in December, accelerating for a fourth month. The increase compared with the 10.2 percent median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of 44 analysts and was the fastest pace since March. Gross domestic product rose 7.9 percent in the fourth quarter from a year earlier and 7.8 percent for the full year.

China’s growth in power use will accelerate this year to more than 9 percent, the State Electricity Regulatory Commission said yesterday. Electricity consumption rose 5.5% to 4.96 trillion kilowatt-hours last year, the commission said.

The nation has set a 2013 industrial-output growth target of 10 percent, equivalent to the nation’s real industrial production rate for 2012, China News Service reported Dec.27, citing the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

— With assistance by Sarah Chen, Jing Yang, and Baizhen Chua

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