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Sri Lankan Non-essential Petrol Sales Halted

Sri Lankan Non-essential petrol sales halted
Photo Courtesy: Reuters

The Sri Lankan government has suspended the sale of fuel to all non-essential private vehicles for two weeks in the face of the worst economic crisis in decades. However, the sale of petrol and diesel for private vehicles will be banned till July 10, 2022. At this time, only fuel (diesel and petrol) will be allowed in buses, trains, medical services, and vehicles used for food transportation in the country. So the article contains Sri Lankan Non-essential petrol sales halted.

Government officials said only 9,000 tonnes of diesel and 6,000 tonnes of petrol were in stock for sale to essential service vehicles. It is believed that with this stock, one week’s demand can be met. Schools in urban areas of Sri Lanka have already been closed. Twenty-two million people have been asked to go to the home office, that is, to work from home. The South Asian country is currently struggling to pay for daily commodities such as fuel and food imports. In this situation, Sri Lanka is continuing to negotiate a financial recovery agreement.

Nathan Piper, Head of Investec’s oil and gas research, said, “Sri Lanka is the first country in the world after the oil crisis of the 1960s to take drastic measures to stop selling fuel to the general public. At that time, fuel was sold in the rationing system in the United States and European countries. Besides, the speed limit was introduced to reduce the demand for fuel. That means the car could not run below a certain speed.”

Mr. Piper added that Sri Lanka had banned the sale of petrol due to rising oil prices and limited foreign exchange reserves. But in the current situation, the people of this South Asian island do not know how to run without fuel. However, in recent months, there have been long queues of motorists for oil at filling stations across Sri Lanka.

Chinthaka Kumara, a 29-year-old taxi driver from Colombo, said the Sri Lankan government’s new ban on petrol sales would create more problems for people. He added, “I am a daily wage earner. I have been on the petrol power line for three days. I don’t know when I will get petrol.”

The Sri Lankan government is now on the path of petrol rationing as fuel has become scarce. For this purpose, the drivers have been asked to go home with tokens in their hands. Many drivers were in line, and many could not.

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