China May Increase Oil Refining Capacity 33% by 2016, IEA Says

China, the world’s second-largest oil user, may increase its refining capacity 33 percent by 2016 from this year, the International Energy Agency said.

A total of 3.3 million barrels a day of net crude distillation unit capacity may be added to the 10 million barrels a day of capacity in early 2011, the Paris-based agency said in its medium-term oil and gas report today.

Global oil demand may rise 1.2 million barrels a day annually through 2016, with China accounting for more than 40 percent of the increase, IEA said. China will add about 2 million barrels a day of refining capacity in the five years through 2015, the official Xinhua News Agency said in January, citing Zhang Guobao, head of the National Energy Administration at that time.

“In the end, the pace of expansion will probably depend on oil demand growth,” IEA said. The government will control the speed at which more domestic refinery capacity is brought on- line to avoid surplus capacity, it said.

Both light and middle distillates, namely naphtha, gasoline, diesel and kerosene, will remain mostly balanced by 2016, while fuel oil imports will be steady at about 200,000 to 300,000 barrels a day currently, IEA said.

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--Winnie Zhu. Editors: Ryan Woo, Jane Lee.

To contact the reporter on this story: Winnie Zhu in Shanghai at wzhu4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alexander Kwiatkowski at akwiatkowsk2@bloomberg.net.

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