China's crude oil imports rose 5.0 percent in June from a year earlier to 23.28 million tons, or 5.69 million barrels a day (bpd), government data showed Thursday.
But imports fell 10.7 percent from 26.08 million tons (6.176 million bpd) in May, according to data released by the General Administration of Customs.
Crude oil imports in January-June period went up 10.2 percent from the same period of 2013 to 6.16 million bpd.
According to estimates by the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), the country made up nearly a third of global oil demand growth in 2013. The EIA projects that China is likely to surpass the US in net oil imports on an annual basis in 2014 as US oil production and Chinese oil demand increase simultaneously.
China's oil demand growth hinges on several factors, such as domestic economic growth and trade, power generation, transportation sector shifts, and refining capabilities.
The statistical agency within the Department of Energy forecasts that China's oil consumption will continue growing through 2014, and its net oil imports will reach 6.6 million bpd compared to 5.5 million bpd for the US.