China emissions plan to affect Australians

Karen Sweeney

Chinese officials are set to offer some insight into how the country is preparing to reduce its reliance on coal and oil.

The Chinese government will be represented at an emissions reduction summit in Melbourne this week to explain what China's new scheme will mean for Australia.

Jiang Kechun of China's National Development and Reform Commission is expected to address the policy to decarbonise its economy, reduce reliance on coal and cut air pollution.

"China is increasingly more important because it's a big Australian partner internationally and what they do will have ramifications for companies that are within the supply chain of Chinese companies affected by carbon pricing," Carbon Market Institute managing director Brad Kerin told AAP ahead of the summit.

Coal is Australia's second largest export to China and is worth about $8 billion a year.

Up to 550 people are expected to attend the two-day summit, starting on Tuesday and hosted by the institute, with almost two thirds representing the business community.

Mr Kerin said business leaders are increasingly aware of the 2030 emissions reduction target and are considering themselves how to reduce emissions, change business operating practices and investment strategies.

"They're looking ahead of the curve and not necessarily waiting for finalised policy to make decisions," he said.

Federal Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg is a keynote speaker at the event and is expected to provide an update on energy policy, including the National Energy Guarantee.

His state counterparts have agreed more work should be done to develop the NEG plan which would implement a 26 per cent emissions reduction target for the electricity sector and introduce reliability guarantees for the National Energy Market.

Other speakers include Labor's foreign affairs spokeswoman Penny Wong, head of the US California Air Resources Board Richard Corey and leading Australian economist Ross Garnaut.