• Short Summary

    China's fast developing petroleum industry is attracting increasing attention from other nations. production this year?

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    China's fast developing petroleum industry is attracting increasing attention from other nations. production this year has already topped the planned level of output and after a recent visit to Peking, the US Energy secretary Mr. James Schlesinger said he estimated that China's untapped oil reserves were more than three times those known to be present in the United states.

    SYNOPSIS: China's importance as a petroleum producer is developing fast. It is the growth of new oilfields, like this one at Jenchui, Hopei Province in Northern China, that is enabling it to step up exports of petroleum to a Western market hungry for oil. Recently, a deal was agreed with Brazil for the export of one million tonnes of crude oil in 1979 in return for immediate shipments of pig iron, sugar and steel products.

    Negotiations are underway with other nations. Following his recent visit to China, Mr. Schlesinger said he estimated China's untapped oil reserves at 100 billion barrels of oil. He brought back to the USA a list of possible American-Chinese energy ventures. High among them was development of China's oil resources.

    Current figures are not available for China's annual oil production, but government recently said overall production had, by the end of October, already exceeded the year's planned output by 14 percent. China's oil production in 1952 was a mere 0.4 million tonnes.

    In 1976, it was an estimated 85 million tonnes. The authorities attribute the ever increasing level of production, in part, to the use of more sophisticated methods of mining. Here at Jenchiu, oil is gushing at the rate of an estimated 1,000 tonnes a day. The well has been producing since the beginning of 1976 and is still expanding.

    New technology is used here also in the movement of the crude oil from the pumping stations to the tankers and then to the country's largest refinery, the Tungfanghong in Peking. The oil in this field was found at a different strata from that in other Chinese fields and opens hope of more such fields.

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    Reuters - Source to be Verified
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