Resources Quarterly - WINTER 2013 - page 11

Resources Quarterly
| WINTER 2013 | 11
The country’s oil demand has also been growing
and in September it surpassed the US to become
the world’s largest net oil importer in September
according to the US Energy Information Admin-
istration (EIA). China consumed 6.3 million more
barrels of oil per day than it produced. The EIA said
in a statement that it expected this trend to con-
tinue through 2014 citing rising auto sales as well
as summer floods that hampered oil production.
But stronger oil demand could lead to higher
costs for drivers in the country. China regulates its
gasoline prices on a national basis. Beijing tends to
only hike gasoline prices when oil prices see large
jumps.
When it comes to steam coal, however, China is
trying to cut demand as it looks to switch to more
environmentally friendly forms of energy genera-
tion. The country is currently facing heavy smog
in its northern region due to the start-up of winter
power plants. China cutting its demand for steam
coal could have an effect on global steam coal mar-
kets as the country may dump its supply into the
international arena lowering global prices.
Other countries in the region are seeing a com-
modities slowdown. Vietnam is seeing a lot of drop
in its import of hot rolled coil have dropped recent-
ly due toVietnamese import traders being unable
to obtain financing from banks. Low priced offers
for commodities are also keeping demand down.
High inflation in the country has kept consumer
spending low, which has affected prices and that
has hurt the manufacturing sector.
John Guise
is a Canadian writer and editor with
10 years of experience working in China where he
focused on commodities and business journalism.
His articles have appeared in Steel Business Briefing,
China Economic Review, Pax International and Na-
tional Post Business. John holds a Bachelor of Jour-
nalism degree fromCarleton University in Ottawa
and is a graduate of the Canadian Securities Course.
He is currently based in Hamilton, Ontario.
About the Author...
RQ
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