Power sector reform will be critical to China’s recent pledge to become carbon neutral before 2060. Built on the success of the inaugural event in 2019, the second UK-China Training Course aimed to share the UK’s 30-year experience in the deregulation and decarbonisation of the energy sector. It also showcased European approaches and challenges to incorporating clean energy with power markets and retiring coal power plants.

The course was delivered by 17 leading UK experts from the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), FCDO, Ofgem, National Grid ESO, Npower, RWE Supply & Trading GmbH, Shell Energy Europe, Chiltern Power, Baringa, AFRY Consulting, and the universities of Bath and Cambridge. The 40 Chinese delegates represented key stakeholders in driving market reform in China, including the National Energy Administration, all regional regulatory bodies, power exchange centres of the State Grid of China and Southern Power Grid, SINOPEC, National Petroleum Corporation, Energy Investment Co. Ltd, State Power Investment Co. Ltd and major power, gas and petroleum exchange centres.

Professor Furong Li from the University of Bath said: “Any reform will face many challenges, this is particularly so for a country like China, where the complexity and difficulties would be far greater than any developed countries. The success or failure of China’s power sector reform will have a profound impact on the national economy, people's livelihood and low-carbon development.”

Professor Michael Pollitt from the University of Cambridge added: “It was a delight to work once again with our colleagues at the University of Bath, our friends at the FCO, and UK and Chinese electricity industry stakeholders in delivering this course. We know that our Chinese colleagues have an important and challenging job of reform to do and we were delighted to be able to share some of the many experiences, both good and bad, arising from the last 30 years of ongoing reform in the UK’s power market.”

Dr Adrian Evans, the Head of the Department of Electronic & Electrical Engineering said: ”The University of Bath has made significant contributions to power markets reform in the UK and this successful event has enabled further dissemination to high-level representatives from China’s energy sector. Energy market reform is a global challenge faced by all nations in the move to low carbon economies and international cooperation through events such as this is vital for its future success.”

Professor Gary Hawley, the Dean of Faculty of Engineering & Design added: “I am delighted to see the continuing success of the engagement of Chinese Power Industry Professionals in the training and development courses that have been delivered. The Faculty of Engineering & Design is committed to high-quality research and delivering its relevance to policy and industry. I am pleased that Bath continues to play a pivotal role in bringing together leading UK experts with Chinese reform stakeholders, supporting China’s power sector reform and contributing to its carbon neutral target.”

The Chinese Embassy in Beijing commented: "The event represents a further advance of the UK’s efforts in supporting China’s power sector reform, and continuation of the University of Bath’s collaboration with leading Chinese academics, policy makers and Chinese energy industry."

The UK-China Training Course in Power Markets was delivered for 40 Chinese Officials between 9 and 13 November 2020. This course is funded by Foreign & Commonwealth and Development Office’s (FCDO) China Prosperity Fund - Energy and Low Carbon Economy Programme (CELCEP).