Research

The following provides summaries of the research in progress by staff of the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. The Institute’s unique multidisciplinary expertise allows it to examine the economics, the politics and the sociology of energy with a focus on oil and natural gas.

The specific subjects of research in progress, while set within these broad lines, necessarily reflects the particular research capacities, skills and interests of the research fellows.

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  • The geopolitics of China’s energy transition 

    By: Michal Meidan

    China’s emergence as a global economic power and energy consumer has shaped global energy production and trade flows. In the fossil fuel world, though, China was a technology follower and a price taker. In the energy transition, China is likely to play a vastly different role. Government-supported efforts to spur innovation have coincided with growing […]

  • Demystifying China’s gasoline balances 

    By: Michal Meidan , Gabriel Collins

    Between 2008 and 2018, China’s gasoline demand doubled, from 1.5 mb/d to 3 mb/d, with gasoline alone accounting for over a third of the country’s total product demand growth. This was closely related to rising incomes and the phenomenal growth of China’s private car fleet. As a result, Chinese refiners and global markets are expecting […]

  • The future of diesel in China 

    By: Michal Meidan

    Diesel has been the most important refined product in China’s oil demand, accounting for a third of consumption in 2018 and for 25% of oil demand growth on average between 2008 and 2018. Historically, diesel was consumed in industry as well as in freight, fuelling trucks and commercial vehicles. But China’s industrial diesel demand has […]

  • China drive for self-sufficiency in petrochemicals and its implications for global petrochemicals

    By: John Richardson

    China is the most important petrochemicals market in the world due to the volume of its demand growth. The scale of consumption is such that today several petrochemicals remain in major deficit in China – such as paraxylene, to make polyester, and styrene, which makes a range of plastics. But because of China’s more vulnerable […]

  • Outlook for China’s gas balances

    By: Michal Meidan

    China’s gas demand has surged on the back of the government’s coal-to-gas switching policy, leading China to absorb an incremental 17 bcm of LNG in both 2017 and 2018. While Beijing remains committed to its environmental targets, the economic slowdown is set to adversely impact industry—currently the largest gas consumer in China—reducing industrial users’ gas […]