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China's November gasoline exports off peak, LNG imports at record high

  • November gasoline exports fell 31.6% from a year earlier to 1.26 million tonnes, off October's record 1.91 million tonnes.
  • Diesel exports in November fell 13.2% year-on-year to 1.92 million tonnes, which was also down from 2.17 million tonnes in October.
Updated 23 Dec 2020

SINGAPORE: China's gasoline exports in November retreated from record highs, while liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports hit a fresh peak on rising demand at the start of the heating season, data showed on Wednesday.

November gasoline exports fell 31.6% from a year earlier to 1.26 million tonnes, off October's record 1.91 million tonnes, according to China's General Administration of Customs.

China's total refined fuel exports fell by nearly a third in November from a year earlier as national refiners limited sales abroad because of lacklustre gasoline margins.

Asian profits for producing diesel and jet fuel, however, rebounded on industrial use and an uptick in aviation demand respectively.

Diesel exports in November fell 13.2% year-on-year to 1.92 million tonnes, which was also down from 2.17 million tonnes in October, customs data showed.

Jet fuel exports edged higher month-on-month to 460,000 tonnes, thanks to a slight recovery in international flights and steady demand for domestic travel, though the volume was still 71.5% lower than a year earlier.

China's fuel exports should rise in December after the government issued new quotas, including the first permits for top private refiner Zhejiang Petrochemical Corp and a rare allotment to state defense conglomerate Norinco.

LNG imports soared to a record 6.61 million tonnes in November, up 2.4% from a year earlier, data showed.

Demand for the fuel typically surges from November with the start of the heating season, while China's continued push to replace coal with gas amid a rapidly recovering economy is set to lift China's LNG imports in December to new highs.