China's Oct crude oil imports rise 9.4% on year to 6.23 million b/d

Singapore (Platts)--9 Nov 2015 559 am EST/1059 GMT

China's crude oil imports rose 9.4% on year to 26.35 million mt in October, or 6.23 million b/d, preliminary data released by the General Administration of Customs Sunday showed.

The October imports were 8.8% lower from September's 6.829 million b/d.

China's crude imports in the first 10 months rose 8.9% on year to 274.97 million mt, averaging 6.63 million b/d, down slightly from a rise of 9.2% seen for the year-ago period.

China skipped crude exports in October as it had done in October 2014.

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Total crude exports of 2.29 million mt over January-October were 536.5% higher than the year-ago period. In the first 10 months of the year, net crude imports reached 272.68 million mt, averaging 6.57 million b/d, up 8.1% on year.


China exported 3.28 million mt of oil products in October, down 7.6% from the six-year high of 3.55 million mt in September, but still the second highest level since December 2009. Exports were last seen any higher in December 2009 at 3.77 million mt, tracing back customs data till 2005.

Exports were also up 4.5% from 3.14 million mt exported in October 2014.

Oil product imports fell 11% on year to 2.03 million mt in October, down 24.8% from September.

This brings net export of oil products to 1.25 million mt, the biggest net export volume seen tracking back customs data till 2005. It expanded further from the net export of 850,000 mt in September.

China was also a net exporter of oil products in October 2014, with net exports of 860,000 mt.

Over January-October, China's oil product exports were up 13.6% on year at 27.73 million mt, while oil product imports amounted to 25.18 million mt, increasing 3.1% from a year earlier.

This brings total net oil product exports to 2.55 million mt over January-October. China has been net exporter of oil products over January-August, January-September and now January-October.

The January-October net exports were up from a net export of 1.26 million mt over January-September 2015.

Imports of fuel oil -- classified by customs as No 5-7 grade -- were down 13.6% from September and 6.1% on year at 1.08 million mt. Total fuel oil imports in the first 10 months fell 8% on year to 13.4 million mt, data showed.

China's fuel oil imports have been steadily falling as demand -- primarily from the country's teapot refineries -- have dried up following a 50% increase in the consumption tax on the fuel during the fourth quarter of last year.

Preliminary production data for October, including refinery runs, is scheduled to be released around November 11 by the National Bureau of Statistics.

--Edited by Haripriya Banerjee,

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