China's Quest for Oil

The passport on Yang Hua's desk is stamped with visas that would alarm immigration clerks around the world. He showed up in Indonesia two days after the Bali nightclub bombings in 2002. He's logged trips on a moment's notice to Iran, Yemen and Qatar, as well as to the U.S., Australia, Canada, England and Brazil. But Yang doesn't try to hide the substances contained in little glass vials that he brings home from his travels. They're lined up on the windowsill of his Beijing office, affixed with labels such as "Saudi sweet." As senior vice president of China National Offshore Oil...