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China to expand offshore oil drilling
www.chinanews.cn 2005-08-12 14:07:12
Chinanews, Tianjin, Aug.12 (By Liu Junwu) - At present, China's oil consumption largely depends on imports. Statistics show that last year, China imported 120 million tons of crude oil in total. It is estimated that if China maintains an economic growth of 7% more or less in the coming 15 years, its crude oil demand will grow at least 4% and the gap between crude oil supply and demand will broaden year after year. On the other hand, owing to continuous hiking international crude oil price and the weakening greenbacks, China's import price of crude oil will still be going up on the whole.

Under such circumstance, expansion of offshore oil exploitation has become one of China's new oil development strategies. China reportedly plans to increase its exploitation scale to twice that of 2003 by 2010. China's crude oil output in 2003 was 169 million tons while its offshore oil output was only 33 million tons. Experts predicted that in the future, growth of oil output will be more and more reliant on offshore exploitation and China's oil exploration is entering a phase of rapid development.

In terms of offshore oil exploitation, China is first confronted with the problem of technology and equipment. Unlike the equipment for onshore exploitation, offshore oil and gas production equipment are small, light, highly efficient, reliable, highly automatic and centralized and organized in setting. Currently, over 50% of China's offshore oil production equipment have to depend on imports. As to the key technology and equipment of high added value, such as geophysical prospecting equipment, system software and positioning equipment, even have to entirely rely on imports. Therefore, five years ago, China published relevant regulations to grant duty-free preference to the special equipment and significant components and accessories used in offshore oil production.

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