Oil processing volumes in China grew by over 4% to a new high in 2021 as state-owned refiners bolstered output and new plants came online, reports Bloomberg. Crude refining climbed to 703.55 million tons, or 14.13 million barrels per day, according to data released Monday by National Bureau of Statistics. That was 4.3% more than in 2020 and 7.4% higher than 2019. Daily volumes in December were down 4.7% on the previous month.
China Petrochemical Corp. and PetroChina Co. increased gasoline and diesel output in H2 2021 to fill in supply gaps left by independent processors. These refiners cut production due to a consumption tax on dirtier feedstocks including light-cycle oil that took effect in June. The two state-owned giants also boosted up diesel output last quarter to avert an energy supply crisis after the prices of coal to gas soared in the autumn.
Refining volumes are likely to continue rising this year as new plants—such as Shenghong Group’s 320,000 barrel-a-day integrated refinery and PetroChina’s 400,000 barrel-a-day Guangdong complex—start operations.