CHINA OIL IMPORTS UP
China's April imports of crude oil from Middle East suppliers rose 10% year on year to a record high of 16.61 million mt or 4.06 million b/d, led by Saudi Arabian supply, according to detailed data released Saturday by the General Administration of Customs.
The country's monthly crude imports from the Middle East were last higher in April 2014 at 3.69 million b/d.
Crude imports from OPEC producers also hit a record high in April of 4.54 million b/d, up 8% year on year.
China's overall April crude imports rose 8.6% year on year to 7.4 million b/d, preliminary customs data showed earlier this month.
It was the first time for China to surpass the US as the world's biggest importer of crude oil.
Russia moved up to China's second-largest supplier in April, with deliveries up 26.4% year on year to 770,447 b/d.
Iran rose to third place with 710,341 b/d, but the volume was down 11.6% from April 2014, when the inflow was at a record high of 803,152 b/d.
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REUTERS - Brent crude futures LCOc1 were down 72 cents at $61.49 per barrel at 1020 GMT, having fallen by 1.5 percent on Tuesday, its largest one-day drop in a month. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 was at $55.12 per barrel, down 58 cents.
BLOOMBERG - Prices dropped during the session as the International Energy Agency said the recent recovery in oil prices, coupled with milder-than-normal winter weather, is slowing demand growth. The worsening outlook for consumption dampened some of the enthusiasm that OPEC and its allies will extend supply curbs.
Global energy needs rise more slowly than in the past but still expand by 30% between today and 2040. This is the equivalent of adding another China and India to today’s global demand.
Product exports have grown significantly over the past several years and are expected to continue to grow as Russian refineries add capacity to produce more high-quality products.