Crude oil imports by China surged in 2010, taking the nation’s overseas oil dependence ratio to more than 55 percent, a media report said on Monday.

China imported more than 200 million tons of crude as the demand for oil rose last year, China Daily said quoting a report by the Economic Information.

A robust economic growth in China pushed oil consumption in the country to 455 million tons in 2010, up 11.1 percent compared with the previous year. China’s economy grew 10.3 percent in 2010.

However, oil demand growth is projected to rise by 6.2 percent to 483 million tons in 2011, the report said.

Wood Mackenzie, a research firm, said in December that world oil demand in 2010 is likely to exceed the previous all-time high reached in 2007, mainly driven by huge demand from the Asian countries.

The report said that the recovery in the global oil demand is mainly led by China, where diesel, gasoil and gasoline demand is growing at eight percent annually.

According to an IEA report in July 2010, China overtook the US as the largest consumer of energy in the world in 2009.

The IEA said China’s energy consumption surpassed the US by 0.4 percent at 2.252 billion tons of oil equivalent in 2009 whereas the US consumed 2.17 billion tons.