January 20, 2014 / 3:15 AM / in 4 years

China's 2013 implied oil demand up 1.6 pct, slowest in 5 years

BEIJING, Jan 20 (Reuters) - China’s implied oil demand grew 1.6 percent for 2013, the weakest yearly growth in five years, and fell 7.5 percent in December from a year earlier according to Reuters calculations based on government data.

The world’s second-largest oil consumer burned roughly 10.06 million barrels per day of oil last month, up 1.2 percent from November’s 9.94 million bpd.

Reuters calculations use refinery throughput plus net imports of main refined oil products. Inventory changes, which China rarely divulges, are not included.

For the whole of 2013, implied demand was about 9.78 million bpd, about 150,000 bpd higher than 2012, the calculations showed.

That lagged the latest forecast by the International Energy Agency which pegged China’s 2013 oil demand growth at 3.8 percent, or 370,000 bpd. (Reporting by Judy Hua and David Stanway; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)

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