China's crude imports rose 19.9% on the year to 10.91 million b/d in December 2021, data from the General Administration of Customs showed Jan. 14, as independent refineries tried to use up new crude import quotas allocated in November.
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The imports in December were up 6.8% from November and represented a second continuous month-on-month recovery from the 39-month low of 8.94 million b/d seen in October.
The country's total crude imports averaged 10.3 million b/d in 2021, falling 5.4% year on year amid destocking activities.
The GAC releases data in metric tons, which S&P Global Platts converts to barrels using a 7.33 conversion factor.
On a metric tons basis, crude inflows in December 2021 rose 10.4% month on month to 46.14 million mt. Import volumes for the whole year stood at 512.98 million mt.
China exported 3.23 million mt of oil products in December, a fall of 45.3% year on year to a 17-month low, GAC data showed, as oil companies ran out of export quotas.
In 2021, the oil product outflow volume declined 2.4% to 60.31 million mt as the reduction in gasoline, gasoil and jet fuel exceeded the increase in bonded bunker fuel oil supplies.
As a result, China's net oil product exports fell 1.1% to 33.18 million mt in 2021.
China's preliminary oil trade data (million mt)
Source: General Administration of Customs