Householders face a rise in energy bills - as well as the possibility their supplier could go bust.
The government is understood to have cooled on supporting big energy firms with state-backed loans.
As uncertainty looms over cash-strapped China Evergrande Group, seizing up China's junk bond market, pressure is building on its peers to access fresh funding to repay notes worth nearly $300 billion due over the next two years. Once its top-selling developer, Evergrande now looms as one of China's largest-ever restructurings as a crackdown on debt ends a freewheeling era of building with borrowed money which became infamous for ghost cities and roads to nowhere. The nervousness has resulted in a handful of Chinese real estate developers having their ratings downgraded by agencies as concern swirls about their debt and repayment abilities, which, in turn, will weigh on their borrowing costs.