As the world’s largest net importer of crude oil and other liquids since September 2013, any significant variation in Chinese demand for oil resonates quickly and profoundly in global oil pricing. Having come out of lockdown against COVID-19 earlier than most other countries, China’s oil demand has already recovered very quickly, to over 90 per cent of pre-coronavirus outbreak levels, supporting crude oil pricing. However, June saw a new outbreak of COVID-19 in Beijing, after 50 days without a new case being recorded, prompting fears over a widespread second wave that, aside from any other effects, could seriously affect China’s oil demand and, therefore, oil prices. “The COVID-19 outbreak in Beijing is the highest-level test of the ability of the Chinese authorities to contain the pandemic after the initial outbreak in Wuhan, and the city’s status as the national capital, political centre and focus of international attention give it […]