China’s energy imports see continuous growth in 2018

China’s energy imports haven’t stopped growing this year, which is sure to bring benefits to the world economy, says a Chinese energy expert, the official Weibo account of China News Agency reported.

Statistics published by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) indicate that China’s crude oil import reached 39.46 million tons in April, a year-on-year increase of 14.7 percent. The import of natural gas hit 6.82 million tons, up 34.2 percent from the previous year.

China has become the world’s largest importer of crude oil and the second largest importer of liquefied natural gas. From January to April, China’s import of natural gas, crude oil and coal saw a year-on-year growth of 36.4 percent, 8.9 percent and 9.3 percent, respectively.

China’s energy import mainly includes oil and natural gas, said Lin Boqiang, director of China Energy Economics Research Center, Xiamen University, adding that the import increase in natural gas is closely related to China’s policy to encourage use of natural gas.

Zhou Dadi, a senior researcher at the China Energy Research Society, noted that China’s oil import will not continue to grow at such a high speed, as the country is adopting various measures to reduce domestic oil consumption.

Among all global crude oil suppliers, Russia has been China’s largest supplier for 13 consecutive months.

China’s General Administration of Customs statistics show that Russia exported 5.79 million tons of crude oil to China in March, indicating 1.36 million barrels per day on average.

In addition, Lin pointed out that China’s import of crude oil from the U.S. is expected to increase in the future, as the cost of import is currently seeing a gradual decrease.