China taking on more Saudi crude

BEIJING, March 24 (UPI) -- China got the bulk of its crude oil from Saudi Arabia and is charting a course to continue that path for many months, an oil trader said.

February marked the sixth consecutive month that Saudi Arabia supplied the most crude oil to China, diverting sources from Western markets, the Platts news service reports.


Chinese crude imports from Saudi Arabia during the first two months of 2011 totaled about 60 million barrels of oil, about 25 percent more than the same period last year.

Oil demand from China in November hit a record 9.3 million barrels per day, analysis by Platts indicated. That is 13.1 percent higher than November 2009.

The International Energy Agency said in a July report that the surging Beijing economy 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 now make up about 50 percent of the kingdom's total exports.

"Saudi Aramco thinks it is the only company which can fulfill Chinese demand and it aims to build a continuous strong partnership (with China)," said a crude trader based in Singapore.


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