Kuwait’s crude oil exports to China in January edged down 1.8% from January 2016 to 1.07m tons, equivalent to around 253,000b/d, Zawya reported based on government data.

The Hellenic Shipping News wrote that Kuwaiti shipments of crude oil to China have been exceeding 250,000b/d level for the third consecutive month, according to the General Administration of Customs.

Meanwhile, China’s overall imports of crude oil in January jumped 27.5% year-on-year to 8.05mb/d.

Saudi Arabia returned to the nation’s top supplier in January, with its shipments growing 18.8% 1.19mb/d, followed by Angola with 1.17mb/d, up 63.4%. Russia became third, with imports from the country surging 36.5% to 1.09mb/d. Oman ranked fourth and Iraq fifth, respectively.

China drastically increased the quota for non-State crude imports in 2016 as it seeks to attract more private capital in the largely monopolized sector.

In 2015, the government gave private refineries, known as “teapot” refiners, the green light to directly import crude oil. These private refiners are with relatively small capacities, ranging from 20,000b/d to 100,000b/d.