BEIJING (Commodity Online) : Crude oil imports by world's second largest oil consumer, China registered a 29.2 percent growth year on year in March.

According to country's General Administration of Customs, China's crude oil imports were 21.06 million tons or 4.98 million barrels per day in March, up 29.2% year on year or 2.7% month on month.

In the first three months, the country's crude oil imports surged 39% year on year to 56.68 million tons.

Analysts have said that the increase in crude oil imports in the first quarter was a result of an increase in domestic oil-processing capacity.

Last month, China imported 3.22 million tons of oil products, 11.42% more than in the previous month, and exported 2.64 million tons of such products, 65% more than in the previous month.

China relied on imports for more than half its crude oil needs last year as a demand recovery outpaced growth in domestic output. The economy, which expanded at the fastest pace in the fourth quarter since 2007, will grow four times faster than the U.S. in 2010, the United Nations said in December.