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China imported a record volume of Russian crude in May, with arrivals surging by 55 percent to nearly 2 million barrels per day (bpd). This has made Russia the top oil supplier to the world’s leading crude importer—putting it ahead of Saudi Arabia for the first time in a year and a half. A record volume of cheap Russian oil, which sells at steep discounts to crude from other countries, made its way to Chinese refiners last month, according to figures from China’s General Administration of Customs cited by Reuters.
China imported 1.98 million bpd of Russian crude oil in May, up by 55 percent from May last year and up from 1.59 million bpd of Russian oil imported in April 2022, the data showed.
The high purchases of Russian oil outstripped supply from Saudi Arabia, Russia’s partner in the OPEC+ deal. Chinese imports of Saudi crude averaged 1.84 million bpd in May, up by 9 percent compared to May 2021, but down from 2.17 million bpd imported in April, according to the data cited by Reuters…
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