PetroChina saw its net profit edge up 1% year on year to 10.3 billion yuan (US$1.5 billion) in the first quarter, according to its financial results filed with the Hong Kong stock exchange.

The oil giant generated business revenue of 591 billion yuan in 1Q, up 8.9 percent. The company said its oil and gas operations in Q1 had a good start as international oil prices rebounded and demand for natural gas increased.

PetroChina and its subsidiaries’ output of crude oil saw a 4.6% rise year on year to 223.4 million barrels in Q1. Its output of marketable natural gas grew 8.9% to almost 1 trillion cubic feet.

PetroChina said China’s recent adjustment of the value-added tax rate would not affect the continuity of its business and regarded it as conducive to the healthy development of its business and improvement of its financial position.

The VAT for refined oil products was reduced by 3 percentage points to 13% after the adjustment which took effect on 1 April.