Tough three weeks ahead for Sri Lanka with crippling fuel, gas shortages incoming: PM


ECONOMYNEXT – June promises to be a tough month for Sri Lanka with fuel and cooking gas shortages at a “very difficult” low, with the government not ruling out the possibility of a ration system, according to Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.

Wickremesinghe told parliament on Tuesday (07) that everyone must use fuel and liquid petroleum (LP) gas as carefully as possible.

“Let’s limit our travels these three weeks as much as possible. I also urge all citizens to refrain from hoarding fuel and gas during this period,” he said.

“At the end of these three difficult weeks, we shall try to supply fuel and gas without disruptions. Negotiations are underway with various parties to ensure this,” he added.

Wickremesinghe said Sri Lanka spends 500 million US dollars per month on fuel. He also warned of a global fuel price hike by as much as 40 percent by the end of the year.

“Against this backdrop, the idea of introducing a coupon system for fuel cannot be ruled out.  We have to somehow find 3,300 million dollars worth of fuel for the next six months,” he said.

“It costs 40 million US dollars a month to import gas. We are currently using multilateral assistance, local currency and Indian loans to import gas. We will require 250 million dollars over the next six months for gas,” he said. (Colombo/May07/2022)

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