China to allow refineries to use 2024 quotas in December

14 December 2023

Independent refineries in China can start choosing quotas for crude oil imports right now, but factories do not want to do this because demand for petroleum products has fallen

The Chinese government is allowing independent refineries to use their crude oil import quotas for 2024 in advance to deliver barrels in December. However, few businesses are interested in this.

S&P Global spoke with six quota holders, and five of them said they would not apply. Independent refineries, especially in Shandong, suffered from limited crude oil import quotas from September to October. Since domestic demand for petroleum products also slowed down with the onset of winter, refineries solved the problem by reducing productivity and increasing imports of alternative raw materials — fuel oil and bitumen mixture.

At the same time, according to analysts from S&P, china has set a quota limit on crude oil imports at 243 million tons or 4.88 million b/d for 2024, keeping the limit unchanged from 2023, 2022 and 2021.

This suggests that serious spurts to increase or reduce oil demand from China on the world market should not be expected. At least if the West doesn’t cause some kind of chaos with new sanctions again.