BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s diesel exports in April rose 5.7% from the same period last year because of resurgent overseas demand and refiners’ efforts to reduce bulging domestic stocks.
Diesel shipments reached 2.72 million tonnes last month, down from 2.81 million tonnes in March, data from the General Administration of Customs showed on Tuesday.
Gasoline exports in April plunged 22.8% from a year earlier to 1.47 million tonnes.
Jet kerosene exports were 660,000 tonnes in April down 67.5% from the record high of 2.03 million tonnes a year earlier.
For May, China’s gasoline exports are expected to fall to 1.29 million tonnes while diesel exports will decline to 1.89 million tonnes, according to energy consultants Jinlianchuang.
“Fuel exports are expected to see an obvious decline trend in the second quarter,” said the consultancy in a note, following shrinking export margins and tighter domestic supply because of refinery maintenance.
China’s crude oil throughput has slowed from a peak during the last quarter of 2020, with April runs at 57.9 million tonnes, or 14.09 million barrels per day.
The customs data on Tuesday also showed China’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports in April were 6.73 million tonnes, up 33.6% from a year earlier, supported by robust demand from industrial users and power generators amid Beijing’s efforts to replace coal with the cleaner fuel.
Below is the latest customs data on fuel exports and imports of LNG in millions of tonnes.
Export April y/y % Jan-Apr y/y % change
Gasoline 1.47 -22.8 6.56 1.8
Diesel 2.72 5.7 8.97 1.1
Jet fuel 0.66 -67.5 2.25 -65.1
LNG 6.73 33.6 26.2 29.6
(Reporting by Muyu Xu and Shivani Singh, editing by Christian Schmollinger)