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China is a large country with one-fourth of the world’s population whose strong demand growth since 1982, in conjunction with growth in other economies, has increased the competition for oil. Simple supply and demand forces have raised the price consumers must pay for oil and created a scramble for new resources. But what has become of China’s internal efforts to increase domestic production?
According to February’s World Oil’s Outlook 2006, China is the world’s fifth largest oil producer. The Russian Federation (9.3 million bopd), Saudi Arabia (9.1 million bopd), US (5.0 million bopd) and Iran (3.9 million bopd) produce more than China at present. In 2005, the country produced 3.4 million bopd from 576 oil fields.
Historically, China has grown its production steadily at 1 – 2%/yr, which is in line with the rest of the world’s demand growth.
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