Daqing, China's largest oilfield, has geared up its output target to extract 40 million tones annually in the coming decade.
Senior officials with the oilfield told Xinhua that the move was at the demand of the central government.
The mayor of Daqing City in 2004 said that the oilfield would reduce output year by year to 32 million tones by 2010. Later, Daqing adjusted the production plan to produce 35.5 million tones in 2010.
The oilfield produced 41.7 million tones of oil in 2007, slightly above the target of 41.62 million tones.
Industry observers said the fact that China imported more and more oil at surging prices was the reason for Daqing's latest change in output target.
Last year, China produced 186.7 million tones of oil and imported 159.3 million tones.
Daqing general manager Wang Yupu said the oilfield was confident of producing 40 million tones per year, despite difficulties for the field that has produced more than 1.9 billion tones since 1959.
Wu Heyong, chief geologist of the exploration institute at Daqing oilfield, said new technologies would be used to explore fields that were previously regarded as "depleted" and new deposits have been discovered in recent years.
(Xinhua News Agency March 25, 2008)