Feb. 24 (Bloomberg) -- China’s oil-product stockpiles increased last month as demand weakened during the Chinese New Year holiday, according to the country’s top economic planner.
Inventories of refined products at the end of January were 2.45 million metric tons higher than a month earlier and 1.7 million higher than a year ago, the National Development and Reform Commission said in a statement on its website today, without giving specific levels. China’s week-long New Year holiday started on Jan. 21.
The volume of crude processed rose 1.9 percent to 36.2 million tons in January from a year earlier, it said. That’s equivalent to 8.56 million barrels a day. Oil processing was a record 9.28 million barrels a day in December, according to data on Jan. 17 from the National Bureau of Statistics, which uses a different methodology from the NDRC and which hasn’t released January figures.
Diesel accounted for most of the gain in stockpiles, the NDRC said. Output of the fuel rose 1.5 percent to 13.57 million tons and gasoline production gained 6 percent to 6.92 million tons. Apparent oil-product demand, a measure that includes domestic production and net imports and excludes stockpiles, fell 5.7 percent on a daily basis in January from December, it said.
Crude oil output fell 2.3 percent to 17.08 million tons, according to the report. Natural-gas output rose 2.4 percent to 9.8 billion cubic meters last month, the NDRC said in separate statement today.
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