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Major Finds Could Lessen Crunch

In at least six areas around China's Shengli Oilfield...

In at least six areas around China's Shengli Oilfield, scientists have found large oil deposits. One of the six contains more than 252 million tons of oil while the other five areas may have between 10-30 million tons.

These new finds, totalling some 280 million tons, will go a long way towards alleviating China's reliance on imports.

"The new breakthroughs will considerably help ease the country's oil shortage and especially sustain the better developed eastern areas," said Yan Jisheng, a ministry official in charge of natural resources. Scientists may still find similar geological areas and even more oil in other parts of the country, said Yan.

The new discoveries were the results of recent developments in underground surveys developed by Chinese scientists.