BEIJING -- China is expected to consume 62.5 percent more oil in 2020 compared with 2006 as fast economic growth will continue to fuel domestic oil demand, says a government think tank.
China's oil consumption would rise from 346.6 million tons in 2006 to 407 million tons in 2010 and 563 million tons in 2020, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences forecast in a new report.
Oil demand would grow by an annual average of 4.5 percent from 2007 to 2010 and an annual average of 3.3 percent from 2010 to 2020, it said.
The rise in refined oil demand would outpace total demand over the next 13 years, with gasoline demand up 5.7 percent annually, helped by a booming automotive industry. Kerosene demand would grow by 5 percent annually and diesel oil 4.2 percent.
Vehicle sales would continue to expand at double-digit rates this year to 10 million in the world's second largest car market, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.
Refined oil would account for 54.1 percent of the total demand in 2010 and 59.5 percent in 2020, compared with 47.1 percent in 2006.
China's rising oil consumption was mainly fueled by "increased interrelations between its GDP and oil consumption and a fast growing transport industry", the report said.
China became a net importer of oil during the 1990s, and now 47 percent of the country's consumption relies on imports.
China's crude oil output was 186.7 million tons last year, up 1.6 percent from 2006, while imports surged 12.4 percent to 160 million tons.
The country's oil producers planned to find 10 new oilfields with reserves of more than 100 million tons each by 2010 in an effort to boost domestic supply, the Ministry of Land and Resources said in a document on its website on April 3.
Last year saw China's biggest oil field discovery in four decades, with reserves of up to 1 billion tons, in the northern Bohai Bay.