China Oil Imports from Russia Soar, Surpass Top Supplier Saudi

The data, which shows that Russia took back the top ranking of suppliers to the world’s biggest crude oil importer—China—after a gap of five months, indicates that Moscow is able to find buyers for its oil despite western sanctions.

Chen Aizhu, Reuters

China’s crude oil imports from Russia soared 55% from a year earlier to a record level in May, displacing Saudi Arabia as the top supplier, as refiners cashed in on discounted supplies amid sanctions on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine.

Imports of Russian oil, including supplies pumped via the East Siberia Pacific Ocean pipeline and seaborne shipments from Russia’s European and Far Eastern ports, totaled nearly 8.42 million tonnes, according to data from the Chinese General Administration of Customs.

That’s equivalent to roughly 1.98 million bbl/d and up a quarter from 1.59 million bbl/d in April.

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