The People's Bank of China, the central bank, said the measure will "promote the healthy and stable operation of the economy," according to a statement.
Brent North Sea crude for March delivery was up 0.96% to hit $54.68 per barrel. US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for delivery next month grew by 0.47% to close at $48.68 a barrel.
The rally comes hard on the heels of Wednesday’s drop in crude prices, which tumbled nearly nine percent as US oil supplies rose by 6.3 million barrels to reach 413.1 million.
Earlier estimates pointed to an oil reserve growth of just 3.75 million barrels.