BEIJING, Dec 7 (Reuters) - China's oil demand is expected to peak by 2030 at between 780 and 800 million metric tons per year, a research institute affiliated with China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) said on Thursday.

The research group, called the CNPC Economics and Technology Research Institute (ETRI), had previously said in 2021 that China's oil demand would peak at 780 million tons by 2030.

ETRI raised the upper range of its forecast by 20 million tons, with China's peak demand expected at 15.6 million to 16 million barrels per day (bpd), according to Reuters’ calculations.

The petrochemical sector will account for 30% of the country's oil demand by 2030, said ETRI vice president Wu Mouyan at an industry seminar.

The country's oil demand is expected to fall to 220 million tons per year by 2060, roughly a quarter of the peak level, due to falling demand for transport fuels, Wu added.

Natural gas demand will peak at 605.9 billon cubic metres in 2040, the research group added.

(ton=7.3 barrels for crude oil conversion) (Reporting by Andrew Hayley; Editing by Jamie Freed and Kim Coghill)