SEOUL, July 14 (Korea Bizwire) – South Korea’s diesel consumption hit a monthly record in May, state statistics showed Thursday, an indication that diesel-powered cars are still dominant over electric and hybrid vehicles.
According to an informational website operated by state-run Korea National Oil Corp. (KNOC), South Korea consumed a record 14.31 million barrels of diesel in May. The previous record was 14.1 million barrels in October last year. Gasoline consumption for May was 6.6 million barrels.
Automobiles used 77.73 percent of the diesel in May. Other users included agricultural and fisheries industry, construction firms and households.
Gasoline consumption also reached a monthly record high in the month, but diesel consumption was on a faster increase than gasoline or LPG, statistics showed. Monthly average consumption of diesel as of May this year was 13.6 million barrels, up from 11.9 million in 2013, 12 million in 2014 and 13 million last year. By comparison, monthly gasoline consumption rose from 6.11 million barrels in 2013 to 6.12 million in 2014, 6.38 million last year and up to May this year.
Industry watchers say diesel consumption will go up further as people go on summer vacation, possibly breaking the current monthly record.
“Use of diesel other than for cars has not increased much. This indicates that the rise in its consumption was mostly from a higher number of diesel-fueled vehicles,” an official at KNOC said.
“In South Korea, vehicle distribution rate is 1 per 2.46 people. In other advanced countries like the United States and Japan, the rate is 1 per 1.2 to 1.7. This suggests that there is more room for demand in the country for gasoline and diesel.”