Vietnam exported over 3.9 million tons of crude oil worth more than 1.7 billion U.S. dollars in the first quarter of this year, down 7.9 percent and 14.6 percent respectively year-on-year.
The country plans to pump out 17.5 million tons of crude oil and 7.3 billion cubic meters of gas this year, the Vietnam National Oil and Gas Group said Tuesday, noting that it shipped abroad, mainly to China, Singapore, Japan, Britain and the United States, 16.6 million tons valued at over 8.3 billion dollars last year.
Vietnam is going to reduce export of fossil fuel like crude oil and coal to foster its petroleum and petrochemical industries, and ensure sufficient supplies for energy-thirsty industries like electricity and cement, said a local official from the Trade Ministry.
Dung Quat, Vietnam's first refinery with an annual processing capacity of 6.5 million tons of crude oil under construction in central Quang Ngai province, is scheduled to operate in late 2008 or early 2009.
Between January and March, Vietnam imported more than 2.9 million tons of petroleum products worth over 1.4 billion dollars, up 13.2 percent and 13.6 percent over the same period last year, respectively.