China's energy demand not slowing

April 22, 2011 at 8:38 AM
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SINGAPORE, April 22 (UPI) -- High oil prices and a slow-moving global economic recovery are doing little to curb China's appetite for crude oil, a survey found.

China's oil demand for March was estimated by the Platts news service at around 9.2 million barrels per day, a 10.5 percent increase from same time last year.

Calvin Lee, a senior energy writer for Platts, said high energy prices weren't doing much to curb energy consumption in a surging Chinese economy.

"Oil demand in the first quarter was buoyed by diesel consumption due to rising industrial production and increased agricultural demand with the onset of the spring planting season," he said.

The International Energy Agency said in a July report that growth in China's has redefined the global energy sector as China passed the United States as the world's largest energy consumer.

The IEA said China outpaced U.S. energy consumption by 4 percent in 2009.

Exports of Saudi crude to China make up about 50 percent of the kingdom's total exports.

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