China to Surpass US as World’s Top Crude Importer
From Press TV
China is on course to overtake the U.S. as the world’s top crude importer by 2014, as the Asian country’s growing refining capacity boosts demand and America’s fracking boom cuts the need for foreign oil, OPEC said today.
Imports to China may surpass 6 million barrels a day by the end of this year, according to an e-mailed report from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. U.S. oil imports declined 21 percent last year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Shipments may drop below 6 million a day in 2014, according to OPEC.
“People have been anticipating this for the better part of a decade,” said Michael Lynch, president of Strategic Energy & Economic Research in Winchester, Massachusetts. “The Chinese top leadership, and especially the military, worries a lot about their energy import dependence. It’s not clear how high it will go but it will certainly keep rising for the foreseeable future.”
China’s imports rose 1.3 percent in December to 5.57 million barrels a day, OPEC said. The country may meet 60 percent of its oil needs with foreign crude this year, according to the report.
The U.S. produced 84 percent of its own energy last year as advances in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, unlocked oil and gas trapped in deep underground rock formations, EIA data show. Domestic crude output reached 7.159 million barrels a day last month, the most since July 1992.
International analysts widely expect China’s economy, given its high growth rates, to overtake the U.S. in terms of gross domestic product, or total size, some time in the first half of this century; though differ on exact timing and criteria. The Telegraph
China’s economy, which has experienced a declining rate of growth for three years, is accelerating and will surpass the United States as the world’s largest economy by 2016, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). International Business Times
China’s current GDP is officially $8.25 trillion, though it’s estimated to be much greater when adjusted for purchasing parity, making $12.38 trillion more accurate, which is third in the world behind the EU ($15.70 trillion) and the U.S. ($15.66 trillion), according to the International Monetary Fund. International Business Times
In just five years, China has surpassed the United States as a trading partner for much of the world, including U.S. allies such as South Korea and Australia, according to an Associated Press analysis of trade data. AP
As recently as 2006, the U.S. was the larger trading partner for 127 countries, versus just 70 for China. By 2011, the two had clearly traded places: 124 countries for China, 76 for the U.S. AP
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