CHINA’S electricity consumption, an important indicator of economic activity, rose slowly in the first eight months of this year, suggesting economic headwinds, official data showed yesterday.
Power consumption rose 1 percent year on year to 3.68 trillion kilowatt-hours in the January-August period, the China Electricity Council said.
In the first eight months, electricity use by primary industry climbed 2.3 percent from a year earlier. Power consumption by secondary industry went down 0.7 percent, while tertiary industry posted a 7.5 percent increase amid economic restructuring.
Meanwhile, residential power consumption grew 4.3 percent year on year.
The decline in power usage in secondary industries indicated continued downward pressure on China’s industrial sector, said Shan Baoguo, with the State Grid Energy Research Institute.
He attributed the broader slowdown to sluggish external demand and a slowdown in exports, which dragged down industrial production.
The figures for August, in which power consumption increased 1.9 percent year on year to 512.4 billion kwh, provided a more encouraging suggestion of recovery.