Natural gas output gained pace in November due to increasing demand for the fuel as winter approached, latest data from the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) showed.
Output amounted to 9.8 billion cubic meters last month, an increase of 11.4 percent year on year, the NDRC said.
China's imports of natural gas moved up 22.5 percent year on year to 3.8 billion cubic meters last month, while the apparent consumption came in at 13.6 billion cubic meters, the commission said.
In the first 11 months, the country's output of natural gas rose 6.8 percent year on year to 97.6 billion cubic meters, while imports saw a 36.7-percent jump to 38.1 billion cubic meters, according to the NDRC.
China's appetite for natural gas has grown substantially with the country's industrialization and urbanization initiatives amid government efforts to cut carbon emissions.
According to a latest development plan in the sector, China aims to bring its natural gas supply capacity to around 176 billion cubic meters, making the energy reachable to 250 million people, or 18 percent of the population by 2015.
Currently, natural gas makes up only around 4.6 percent of the country's primary-energy consumption, much lower than the international average of 23.8 percent