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Daqing Oilfield to Slash Output in 2004

The Daqing Oilfield in Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province has decided to slash its production by two million tons this year.

The decision was made in accordance with a plan for adjustment worked out by the China National Petroleum and Gas Group Company, said an official with the Heilongjiang Provincial Development and Reform Commission. The official added that he feared that the cut would have a negative impact on the province's economic growth.

Daqing contributes about one-third of Heilongjiang's GDP, as well as two-thirds of the province's revenue, said the official.

According to him, Heilongjiang will see a drop of 3 billion yuan (US$362 million) in industrial output value because of the output cut at Daqing, plus a loss of 15 billion yuan (US$1.81 billion) in profits.

Because of a shortage of renewable resources and a shrinkage ofexploitable oil reserves, Daqing saw a drop of 1.74 million tons of oil, and only produced 48.4 million tons of crude last year, putting an end to 27 years of stabilizing its output at a minimum of 50 million tons annually.

(Xinhua News Agency February 6, 2004)

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