In 2017 China imported about a half million more barrels of oil per day than the United States, the world's leading economy, U.S. federal data show.
China became the world's № 1 importer of petroleum and other products 5 years ago. Last year, it imported 8.4 million barrels of oil per day on average, beating out the U.S.by 500,000 barrels per day, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
China, the 2nd-largest economy in the world behind the U.S., reported in January that gross domestic product expanded 6.9 % from 2016, beating expectations by about 0.2 %. According to the National Bureau of Statistics, it's the 1st time annual growth has improved in 7 years.
EIA reported that Russia, however, is the largest oil supplier to the Chinese market. Russia last year exported about 1.2 million barrels per day on average to China, compared with the average 1 million barrels per day from Saudi Arabia.
The launch of the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline in 2010 was described by Vladimir Putin as a strategic victory for a Russian energy sector looking to capitalize on Asian economy success.
Oil demand from China in November, the last full month for which data are available, was 9 million barrels per day - the 2nd highest on record.