China's consumption of crude oil to increase by 11% in 2010

12 October 2010 17:12  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--China’s total consumption of crude oil in 2010 is expected to increase by 11% year on year to 431m tonnes amid increasing demand from refineries, an industry analyst said on Tuesday.

“Construction of commercial reserves surged significantly since the second half of 2009 amid increasing crude demand from refineries due to good refining margins and rising capacities,” said Li Li, a senior analyst with Chinese energy market intelligence service C1 Energy.

(C1 Energy is a wholly owned subsidiary of CBI China, in which ICIS is in the process of increasing its ownership stake.)

With new capacities coming on stream, China’s crude throughput could reach 10m bbl/day from 2013, Li said at the 2010 Asia-Pacific Petroleum Conference (APPEC) in Singapore.

“Yet domestic output remains relatively stable, so the country has to keep expanding its crude imports. The imports may breach 5m bbl/day from 2012,” she said.

China's consumption of crude oil rose 15.1% year on year to 289m tonnes in the January-August period of this year, while consumption of naphtha surged 51.3% to 17.5m tonnes, Li said.

The country's consumption of lubricants in the first eight months of the year, including base oils, rose by 17.4% year on year to 7.21m tonnes, while consumption of bitumen grew 19.7% to 20m tonnes, according to Li.

China was expected to import 233m tonnes of crude in 2010, a 14% increase compared with the previous year, she said.

Crude imports and throughput were expected to slip slightly in the second half of 2010 from the first half, with production expected to remain flat, Li added.

China’s total crude refining capacity is expected to reach 12m bbl/day in 2010, with 648,000 bbl/day of new capacity to come on stream this year, she added.

A total of 2.9m bbl/day of new capacity would be added in the 2011-2013 period, with refining capacity expected to exceed 14m bbl/day by 2013, Li said.

In addition, 11 new projects and expansions in China are pending approval or are under initial planning, she added.

Read John Richardson and Malini Hariharan’s Asian Chemical Connections blog
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By: Nurluqman Suratman

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