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21 Dec, 2022 11:00

Russia becomes top crude supplier to China

The country has overtaken Saudi Arabia, which saw its Asian exports decline in November
Russia becomes top crude supplier to China

Russia boosted oil deliveries to China by 17% in November from one year earlier, overtaking Saudi Arabia to become the country’s top supplier, Chinese customs announced on Tuesday.

This comes as Chinese refiners have been rushing to stock up on oil ahead of the EU price cap, which took effect on December 5.

Deliveries of Russian crude, including oil pumped through the East Siberia Pacific Ocean (ESPO) pipeline and seaborne shipments from Russia’s European and Far Eastern ports, amounted to 7.81 million tons last month. This is equivalent to 1.9 million barrels per day, compared to 1.82 million bpd in October.

China’s imports from Saudi Arabia totaled 6.62 million tons in November, or 1.61 million bpd, which is down 11% from a year ago. Exports of Russian crude increased over 1% last month since October, customs data shows.

Supplies to China from Russia surged by 10.2% over 11 months of the year and reached 79.78 million tons, according to the report. In annual terms, Russian deliveries to the Asian country were slightly behind exports from Saudi Arabia, which totaled 80.38 million tons from January to November.

In terms of value, Russian oil supplies to China in the reported period were worth $54.49 billion – 50% more than last year – while oil from Saudi Arabia was more expensive and cost China $60.2 billion.

Iraq is ranked third in oil deliveries to China, with 50.4 million tons worth $35.9 billion, followed by the United Arab Emirates with 37.86 million tons worth $28.9 billion, and Oman with 35.9 million tons worth $26.7 billion.

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