China is the largest public financier of overseas coal plants. Last week, an alliance of 35 NGOs pressed the Bank of China to end the financing of such projects outside China in order to combat climate change.
Companies have become expert at concentrating their profits in jurisdictions with low or zero corporate tax rates. That tax dodge — which is entirely legal — will become much less attractive once this agreement comes into force.
With 96 separate provisions for the river system spread across nine chapters of legislation, it is the largest environmental protection bill the rivers of China have ever seen, and will enter into force on March 1.