Venezuela Oil Shipments to China Average Over 360,000 B/D

CARACAS (Dow Jones Newswires), August 25, 2008

Petroleos de Venezuela SA, PdVSA, is now sending roughly 360,000 barrels of crude a day to China, a company official said late Friday.

"I believe we're now shipping more than 360,000 barrels of crude a day," Eulogio del Pino, a PdVSA vice president told reporters at the Miraflores presidential palace.

Last year, Oil Minister Rafael Ramirez said the Andean country aimed to ship as much as 500,000 barrels of crude a day to China this year.

Del Pino said PdVSA still aims to increase those shipments to 1 million barrels a day by 2012.

Venezuela's fuel-oil shipments to the Asian nation have surged this year. The oil-rich country managed to supply 14.1% of China's energy product imports in May, up from 3.1% during the previous month, according to figures from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, OPEC.

Venezuela, an OPEC founding member, has vowed to diversify its oil customer base away from too much reliance on the U.S., its largest client. 

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