PetroChina, the country’s largest producer by volume, swung to a first-quarter net loss of 13.8… BEIJING—China’s efforts to support its state-controlled oil giants have so far yielded mixed results, showing how the global oil-price slump is reshaping the industry and how some companies will need more ambitious cost cuts to protect profits this year. The results show the diverging fortunes of China’s big oil companies after nearly two years of low prices and illustrate the lengths the government will go to protect beleaguered state-owned conglomerates that make up the backbone of economic growth. China Petroleum & Chemical, also known as Sinopec, is doing better due to its larger refining operations—such as manufacturing gasoline from crude oil—yielding high margins because of low crude prices and government policies that kept retail fuel prices artificially high. PetroChina’s reliance on pumping oil from expensive and aging wells makes it more susceptible to the […]