China’s August Oil Imports Rise 6.5% in August

China’s August Oil Imports Rise  6.5% in AugustChina’s August Oil Imports Rise  6.5% in August

China’s crude oil imports rose 6.5% in August from a month earlier to their highest since May, boosted by a rebound in demand from smaller, independent refiners, customs data showed on Saturday.

Arrivals last month were 38.38 million tons, or 9.04 million barrels per day, according to the General Administration of Customs, Reuters reported. This was up from 8 million bpd a year ago and 8.48 million in July and just slightly lower than the forecast of 9.12 million bpd from Thomson Reuters Oil Research.

For the first eight months of the year, crude purchases stood at 299 million tons, up 6.5%, the data showed. Independent refiners, known as teapots, wound back their crude buying earlier this year, shutting or suspending operations due to a combination of sinking diesel demand, higher crude prices and new tax rules.

However, a recent rise in fuel prices and improved margins have led to an increase in crude processing, with many now returning from summer maintenance to gear up for rising winter demand. Teapot buying in August rose to 6 million tons, or 1.4 million bpd, up 40% from July, and September arrivals are expected to breach 7 million tons, data from Thomson Reuters Supply Chain and Commodities Research showed.

Total gas imports in August were at 7.77 million tons, up 5.4% from 7.38 million in July, according to the data. In the year to date, imports were 57.18 million tons, an increase of 34.8%.

The increase comes after state-owned oil companies pledged to take measures in advance this year to prepare for potential shortages during the winter heating season.


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