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China’s June diesel exports rebound amid record refinery output

China’s June diesel exports rebounded from May and more than doubled from the same period last year, as refiners shipped out more surplus barrels amid record refinery production.

Diesel shipments last month reached 2.36 million tonnes, versus 1.68 million tonnes in May and 1.04 million tonnes in June 2020, data from the General Administration of Customs showed on Sunday.

Chinese refineries processed at record rates in June as plants returned from maintenance and due to the start-up of a new crude unit at private mega refiner Zhejiang Petrochemical Corp in April.

Traders also rushed to bring in earlier booked cargoes of blending fuels – light cycle oil and mixed aromatic – before a new tax came into effect, adding to a domestic fuel surplus.

Jet kerosene exports also increased in June to 910,000 tonnes, the highest level since April 2020 and compared with 770,000 tonnes a year earlier.

June gasoline exports were 1.45 million tonnes, down from 1.55 million tonnes in May but up 91% from June 2020.

For the first half of this year, diesel exports totalled 13.01 million tonnes, up 14.6% from the same period last year, while gasoline exports rose 21.3% to 9.56 million tonnes.

Sunday’s data also showed China’s June liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports were 6.72 million tonnes, easing from 7.03 million tonnes in May.

Imports in the first six months rose 27.8% on the year to 39.78 million tonnes, as companies extended strong purchases even after the peak-demand heating season ends in mid-March, helping push up Asian spot prices of the super-chilled fuel.

Below is the latest customs data on fuel exports and imports of LNG in millions of tonnes. Percentage changes in the table are based on Reuters calculations.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Muyu Xu in Beijing and Chen Aizhu in Singapore; editing by David Evans and Kim Coghill)

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