[photopress:Han_Wenke.JPG,full,alignright]China’s annual crude oil demand may rise to about 550 million tons by 2020 which is a fairly staggering 11 million barrels a day.
Han Wenke, director general of the Energy Research Institute under the National Development and Reform Commission and seen in our illustration, told an industry conference that this compares with last year’s 320 million tons.
He said, ‘My estimate is a bit higher than the projection made by our government but lower than the figure projected by International Energy Agency.’
Han Wenke believes the forecast of 600 million tons by Paris-based IEA is inaccurate as the oil policy advisory has overestimated China’s transport fuel use.
He said, ‘They may have reached their 600-million-ton forecast out of the potential growing auto ownership in China. But China is using its railroad network to reduce nationwide logistics costs and encourage public transport in major cities.
‘The auto sector is growing fast, but China has also turned to diversification as its priority in securing energy supply.’
The problem is that the amount that China can produce is limited. Han Wenke said China may be able to produce a total amount of crude oil of between 146.3 million tons and 187.5 million tons in 2020, against 183.7 million tons last year.
These forecasts add pressure on China showing it will have to rely more on imports.
China’s net crude imports hit a record high of 3.48 million barrels a day last month, beating the previous record of 3.25 million barrels a day set last September.
Source: Shanghai Daily
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