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Fuel shortages drive Haitians into the Dominican Republic for petrol

File photo: Petrol pump Photograph:( Getty )

Reuters Dajabon, Dominican Republic Sep 24, 2019, 10.01 AM (IST)

Facing acute fuel shortages in their own country, Haitians took a chance to cross the border into the Dominican Republic in search of petrol on Monday.

Dozens were seen crossing the border and gathering around a petrol station in Dajabon, the capital city of the Dajabon province in the Dominican Republic, on the border with Haiti.

Haitians complained they need fuel to survive, while police in the Dominican Republic tighten their grip on security.

A dispute between Haiti and a US energy trading firm has to lead to long blackouts and fuel shortages in the Caribbean nation, feeding anger at President Jovenel Moise's government following the collapse of a supply deal with Venezuela last year.

The Western Hemisphere's poorest nation, Haiti long relied on fuel shipments from nearby OPEC member Venezuela, which offered cheap financing to several Caribbean nations to buy its gasoline, diesel and other products through a program called Petrocaribe.

But the scheme fell apart last year due to economic turmoil in Venezuela, forcing Haiti, a nation of 11 million people to return to international markets.

The result has put upward pressure on the prices of goods.

Story highlights

Haitians complained they need fuel to survive, while police in the Dominican Republic tighten their grip on security.