SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Russia became the largest supplier of oil to China in August for the second straight month, customs data showed Friday, and supplies from Saudi Arabia fell by a third.
Russia delivered 5.8 million tons of oil to China in August, according to data from the PRC General Customs Administration. This is equivalent to 1.37 million barrels per day, which is 3.7% less than a year earlier. In July, imports amounted to 1.74 million barrels per day.
The year-on-year percentage change is based on Reuters calculations as customs did not provide such data.
Supplies from Saudi Arabia in August amounted to 5.26 million tons, or 1.24 million barrels per day, which is 32.5% less than a year earlier.
By the end of the first eight months of 2020, Russia remained the leading supplier – 57.1 million tons, which is 15.6% more than in the same period last year. Imports from Saudi Arabia totaled 55.8 million tons, up 6.1% from a year earlier.
Iraq, which was the second largest oil supplier in July, delivered 4.6 million tons in August, down 20% from July levels as the country began to cut production to offset overproduction under the OPEC + deal.
China's crude oil purchases declined in August compared to July and June and are expected to continue to decline in the coming months as inventories rise and refining margins shrink.
(ton = 7.3 barrels)
(Chen Aizhu; Translated by Caleb Davis. Editor Marina Bobrova)