Storage capacity for oil and petrochemical products is to receive a boost when China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) starts building a 6.2 million-barrel crude oil tank farm in March in the northern port of Tianjin, aimed for completion by year-end.
Exact storage figures have been tightly-guarded. One firm put Chinas total crude tank space at 40 million m3 (252 million barrels) and products at 50 million m3 (315 million barrels) in April 2009.
A senior PetroChina official said China's total refined oil products storage capacity hit 52 million m3 (327.6 million barrels) at the end of 2008, growing by an average annual rate of 9% from 40 million m3 in 2004.
The official also estimated that Chinese oil firms would expand their products tanks to 70 million m3 by 2015.
By 2015, the top two oil firms' refined products capacity is likely to exceed 40 million m3 (252 million barrels) from the current level of just under 28 million m3 while private firms' capacity is to hit 28 million m4 (176.4 million barrels) from the existing 24.36 million m3.
State oil trader Sinochem plans to add 2.5 million barrels of depots in the southern city of Zhuhai by 2010, to store fuel oil and products.
Current and planned Chinese capacity stands at 22,357,000 m3, according to reports.