China's consumption of oil products rose 4.1% year on year to 28.13 million mt in October, latest data released by the National Development and Reform Commission showed.
The growth was mainly led by gasoline consumption, which rose 11.1% on year, while gasoil consumption fell 2.2% over the same period, NDRC said, without providing a breakdown of volumes for the two grades.
NDRC's data for gasoline consumption growth in October exceeded the market's earlier expectation.
"We had expected the October growth [for gasoline consumption] to slow down due to the deceleration of car sales and sluggish economic growth," an oil trader in Beijing said, who still believed that China's gasoline consumption growth would be slower in November and December due to high prices.
China processed 50.09 million mt of crude oil in October, up 2.3% on year, NDRC data showed.
The country's oil product output rose 2.1% over the same period to 31.28 million mt, according to NDRC.
China produced 16.14 million mt of crude oil in October, up 0.4% year on year, NDRC said.
Over January-October, China's oil product consumption was up 5.3% on year at 269.97 million mt, with consumption of gasoline rising 6.9% and gasoil rising 3.1%, NDRC said, without providing a breakdown of volumes.
The oil product consumption growth in the first ten months was slower than the 6.8% year-on-year increase seen in the same period of last year, NDRC's historical data showed.
Over January-October, China processed 490.43 million mt of crude, up 5.3% on year, while its oil product output rose 7% to 306.35 million mt, NDRC data showed.
The growth of oil product consumption was also lower than that of oil product output in the ten-month period, which implies more oil product was exported or went into storage, market sources said.
Over January-October, Chinese gasoline exports rose 32.5% on year to 10.97 million mt, while gasoil exports rose 18.8% over the same period to 15.73 million mt, General Administration of Customs data showed.
OCT GAS CONSUMPTION RISES 16% ON YEAR
In the gas segment, China's consumption of natural gas rose 16.3% on year to 23.1 Bcm in October, NDRC said.
China produced 13.4 Bcm and imported 9.9 Bcm of natural gas in October, up 8.9% and 26.6% year on year, respectively.
Over January-October, China's natural gas consumption was 224.8 Bcm, up 18% on year, while production rose 6.5% to 129.1 Bcm and imports jumped 36.4% to 98.5 Bcm, NDRC data showed.
NDRC releases key data on output in the oil and gas industry on a monthly basis, but does not provide explanations for the changes.
Platts calculates the data for the prior year based on the percentage changes provided by the NDRC.
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