HOUSTON, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- The number of active drilling rigs in the United States increased by six to 261 this week, down by 599 year on year, according to the weekly data released Friday by Houston-based oilfield services company Baker Hughes.
These active drilling rigs included 183 oil rigs operating in the U.S. oil fields, up by four from the previous week; 75 gas drilling rigs, up by two from the previous week; and three miscellaneous rigs, unchanged from last week.
The 261 rigs included 246 land drilling rigs, up by six from the previous week; 14 offshore drilling rigs and one inland water drilling rig, both unchanged from last week.
Of them, 21 are directional drilling rigs, 224 are horizontal drilling rigs and 16 are vertical drilling rigs.
During the week, the number of drilling rigs increased the most by seven in the state of Texas to 113 rigs.
By far, the Permian Basin in western Texas and eastern New Mexico has been the largest source of shale oil production growth in the United States, having become an engine of supply growth outside the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries in the past years.
The United States became a world important oil producer in the past years with the help of its shale oil production growth. Meanwhile, China continues to be one of the biggest oil consumers of the world.
According to the latest release from the Chinese National Bureau of Statistics, China's crude oil output went up 2.3 percent year on year to 16.65 million tonnes in August, quickening from an increase of 0.6 percent registered in July. In August, China imported 47.48 million tonnes of crude oil, surging 12.6 percent year on year.