On 17 May 2021, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) issued three documents expounding the administrative rules regarding the trading platform, registry, and settlements of the country’s national ETS. In the announcement, it nominated Hubei Emission Exchange as responsible for the registry system and Shanghai Energy and Environment Exchange as custodian of the trading system until new institutions for the management of the respective systems are established. As such, both trade centres will be in charge of opening accounts, operating the system, and maintaining it.
The documents are the results of a round of consultations in November 2020. The main aspects of the announcement are:
- Initially, only enterprises which are covered by the national ETS will be free to open accounts. Other entities are to be allowed as well according to rules which the regulator will announce later on.
- As of now, only allowances (CEAs) are permissible for trade. The MEE plans to introduce other products in the future.
- The staff of government authorities, the registry, and the trading platform, as well as verification entities, will be prohibited from opening accounts or trading.
- Co-clearing banks and related personnel shall not engage in carbon trading activities.
- A maximum position of allowances will be imposed. Anyone who crosses the set threshold will need to report to the exchange. The maximum holding level will be defined by the exchange.