The Shanghai Futures Exchange announced it will launch trading in fuel oil futures on August 25, a move that should prelude trading in crude oil contracts, analysts said. Regulators shut down fuel oil futures trading in 1994 amid soaring speculation driven wild by mounting corruption. China imports a third of the six million barrels of oil it consumes daily and needs a derivatives market more than ever with foreign players coming into the country's once closed oil sector. In the first half of 2004, it imported 15.3 million tonnes of fuel oil, according to customs data. Only the US consumes more crude oil than China, which imported 61 million tonnes in the first half.
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