Sri Lanka fuel crisis worsens: Nation runs out of petrol and diesel

Edited By: Moohita Kaur Garg
Colombo, Sri Lanka Updated: Jun 25, 2022, 09:20 PM(IST)

In response to a lack of crude oil, the CPC also closed its sole refinery, he continued. 90,000 tonnes of Russian crude oil purchased on a two-month credit basis through Coral Energy in Dubai was used by the refinery to begin operations earlier this month. Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Sri Lanka is facing a serious shortage of foreign exchange and has barely any to finance even the most essential imports like food, fuel and medicines

Sri Lanka's troubles seem to be getting worse. On Saturday, while apologising for the country's worsening fuel crisis, Kanchana Wijesekera, the South Asian nation's energy minister said that several expected shipments were facing unexpected delays. As per an AFP report, Sri Lanka is virtually running out of petrol and diesel. The minister said that oil cargoes which were due last week failed to turn up while those expected next week will also not reach the country thanks to some "banking and logistical reasons" reasons. He further added that the state-run Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC), is unable to predict when new oil supplies will arrive on the island. 

In response to a lack of crude oil, the CPC also closed its sole refinery, he continued. 90,000 tonnes of Russian crude oil purchased on a two-month credit basis through Coral Energy in Dubai was used by the refinery to begin operations earlier this month.

Watch | Sri Lanka economic crisis: Indian officials hold talks on additional aid

The nation is facing a serious shortage of foreign exchange and has barely any to finance even the most essential imports like food, fuel and medicines. To alleviate the situation the country had to resort to appealing for international handouts.

As hundreds of thousands of drivers waited for hours for gasoline and diesel across the poor country, the minister apologised "for the delay and inconvenience."

Also read | Sri Lanka limits forex possession by citizens to support diminishing reserves

The 22 million-person South Asian nation would continue to experience challenges for a few more months, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe warned parliament on Wednesday. He also advised people to utilise fuel carefully.

"Our economy has faced a complete collapse," Wickremesinghe said. 

"We are now facing a far more serious situation beyond the mere shortages of fuel, gas, electricity and food."

(With inputs from agencies)

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