Taiwan, like other key Asian crude importers, has a stated policy of diversifying crude supply sources – namely cutting dependence on Middle East volumes. But, whilst the Gulf share fell between 2015 and 2018, progress ground to a halt for 2019, despite late-year progress.

Asia’s top four crude importers are China, Japan, India and South Korea. But Taiwan vies with Singapore and Thailand for fifth spot. 2019 imports of 900,000 b/d equate to just under 1% of global output. And with the release of provisional December stats on 8 January, Taiwan is also the first country of note to release comprehensive 2019 import data. (CONTINUED - 723 WORDS)