China increased supplies of discounted Russian oil to a record 107 million tons in 2023, despite Western sanctions. China is pursuing the goal of increasing imports. This is reported by Reuters.
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Last year, Russia supplied a record 107.02 million tons of crude oil to China, which is equivalent to 2.14 million barrels per day. These figures are much higher than other major oil exporters to China, such as Saudi Arabia and Iraq.
Imports from Saudi Arabia, previously China's largest supplier, fell 1.8% to 85.96 million tons, due to competition with Russian oil, which was sold at a discount.
Chinese oil refining companies use intermediary traders to transport and insure Russian oil to avoid violating Western sanctions.
The discount and the possibility of transporting oil despite sanctions increased the demand for Russian oil in countries such as China and India. This increased the price of Russian ESPO oil, exceeding the price limit set by the G7 at $60 per barrel.
According to Reuters sources, supplies of ESPO oil in December were priced at a discount of approximately 50% to 20% per barrel according to the standard ICE Brent price, compared to a discount of $1 for cargo delivered in October and $8.50 for delivery in March.
Despite geopolitical tensions between Beijing and Washington, in 2023 by 81.1% Crude oil supplies to China from the United States increased amid rising production in the United States.
Total imports of crude oil into China last year rose to a record nearly 564 million tons, or 11.3 million barrels per day.< /p>