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China’s natural gas imports hit record high in December as winter bites


China’s natural gas imports soared to a record high in December to battle a winter supply crisis. Gas imports, including pipeline imports and tanker shipments of liquefied natural gas (LNG), came in at 7.89 million tonnes, 20 per cent above November’s previous record of 6.55 million tonnes, data from the General Administration of Customs showed. Imports for the whole of 2017 jumped 27 per cent from 2016 to a record 68.57 million tonnes. Crude oil imports instead eased sharply from November. December’s crude oil imports hit 33.7 million tonnes, or about 7.94 million barrels per day (bpd), compared to November’s 9.01 million bpd. Buying eased in December because refiners and fuel distributors drew on inventories after hefty stockpiling in the previous month.

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