Oil

China imports more oil from Saudi than any other country in June

Credit: REUTERS/CHINA STRINGER NETWORK

China's crude oil imports from Saudi Arabia rose 15% in June from a year ago, as refiners ordered record volumes of the fuel in March and April when oil prices tumbled, cementing the kingdom's position as the top oil supplier to China.

Repeats for Asia morning readership. No change to text.

BEIJING, July 26 (Reuters) - China's crude oil imports from Saudi Arabia rose 15% in June from a year ago, as refiners ordered record volumes of the fuel in March and April when oil prices tumbled, cementing the kingdom's position as the top oil supplier to China.

Imports from Saudi Arabia rose to 8.88 million tonnes in June, or 2.16 million bpd, in June, according to data from the General Administration of Customs on Sunday.

That was in line with May's volumes, but well above 1.89 million bpd during the same period last year.

The record imports follow a price war between Saudi Arabia and Russia, the world's top oil exporters, during March and April when the coronavirus pandemic dampened demand and caused a global fuel glut.

Shipments from Russia were at 7.98 million tonnes last month, or 1.95 million barrels per day (bpd), up around 7% from 1.82 million bpd in May and 1.73 million bpd in June 2019.

Saudi, however, delivered bigger oil cuts from June and raised crude prices as a plunge in oil prices weighed on the kingdom's budget.

China, the world's biggest crude oil importer, took in a record 53.18 million tonnes last month, according to customs data.

China also boosted inflows from Brazil, Norway and Angola, said Emma Li, analyst from Refinitiv.

Brazil, whose massive offshore projects are coming online, offered Asian refiners competitive deals on relatively high-quality oil just as China and other Asian countries contained the coronavirus and reopened their economies.

Analysts expect China to see another record amount of crude imports in July as some May-loading cargoes are still underway while swelling oil inventory at major Chinese ports slows new arrivals.

Below are details of imports from key suppliers.

Country

June(tonnes)

y/y % change

Jan-June (tonnes)

y/y % change

Russia

7978454

11.5

43962098

16.6

Saudi Arabia

8884227

15.1

45163956

19.6

Iraq

6010996

69.6

33189711

45.9

Oman

2980547

43.5

18312800

16.5

Angola

4441743

0.4

21074856

-16.7

Brazil

4976740

92.9

20454438

1.2

Malaysia

572444

-43.9

7779899

81.2

U.S.

587118

23.7

1136957

-46.3

Venezuela

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

Iran

N/A

N/A

1699654

-84.6

(Reporting by Muyu Xu and Pei Li; Editing by Sam Holmes)

((muyu.xu@thomsonreuters.com; +86 10 56692117;))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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