Accompanying the rapid economic growth that China has experienced in the last few decades, are the implications on China's energy situation that follow. Deng Xiaoping said it best in 1980, when he mentioned, "Energy is the priority issue in the economy."" Between 1980 to 2000, China's GDP quadrupled, with an annual average GDP growth of 9.3% from 1989-20124. From 1978-2004, China's energy consumption increased 2.45 times and energy production nearly doubled. With its rising energy consumption come problems regarding the supply and efficient use of energy due to the negative implications the energy crisis has on the environment and worldwide climate change. China will need a comprehensive energy strategy with policies aimed at improving energy efficiency and sustainability in the coming decades. .
With China's continually growing economy, China's energy consumption continues to rise as shown by a 7% rise in 2011 to 3.48 billion metric tons of standard coal equivalent3. According to the Paris-based International Energy Agency and BP Plc's Statistical Review of World Energy, China surpassed the U.S. in 2010 to become the world's largest energy consumer. China's energy consumption demand made up 20.3 percent of the global energy demand compared to the United States' 19%. Crude oil consumption is the most rapidly growing one among all of the energy sources. The increase in China's oil consumption corresponds to the increase in demand for transport fuels. Along with the new and growing middle class in China, private car ownership has increased in China and some cities in China experience rush-hour congestion comparable to that of large cities in developed Western countries so there is definitely an increase in demand for oil for transportation. .
With such a huge demand for energy, China no longer could count on domestic production to meet all of its demand so in 1993 China started to become a net importer of oil products and since 1996 it has been a net importer of crude oil.