China’s reliance on natural gas imports will continue, accounting for more than half of the country’s total consumption, as demand surges for the fuel for both industrial and residential use, state-run China Daily reported Tuesday.
China, which is widely estimated to realize more than 9 percent growth in GDP in 2011, imported 3.1 billion cubic meters (cu m) of natural gas in November, 1.5 times higher than during the same month last year, according to figures from the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).
The increase in November saw the nation’s total imports of natural gas in the first 11 months of the year grow by 91.5 percent year-on-year to 28.1 billioncum.
China produced 91.4 billion cu m of natural gas between January and November, with growth of 6 percent compared with the same period in 2010, the NDRC said.
China’s energy demand will rise in tandem with the country’s economic growth, Li Junfeng, deputy director of the NDRC’s Energy Research Institute, was quoted as saying. Natural gas imports will increase greatly to account for more than 50 percent of total consumption in the future, said Li, but without providing a timeframe.
Between January and November, the country’s apparent consumption – including imports and domestic production but excluding exports – of natural gas rose 20.5 percent from a year earlier to 115.9 billion cu m, the NDRC said.