clearn.png
Friday March 5th, 2021 8:35PM

Syria temporarily cuts supplies of fuel to meet shortages

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syria’s petroleum ministry on Sunday blamed U.S. sanctions for forcing it to cut by up to 24% its distribution of fuel and diesel because of delays in arrival of needed supplies.

The war-ravaged nation already is facing a severe economic crisis that has caused major shortages in wheat and fuel products. Long lines have formed outside of gas stations and bakeries as the government rationed what it has, further deepening the crunch felt by Syrians.

The economic hardship has only intensified during the pandemic, with restrictions designed to limit the spread of coronavirus and tighter U.S. and western sanctions against the government of President Bashar Assad, who remains in office despite a crushing 10-year civil war.

The U.S. and other western countries have intensified sanctions against Assad and his government and allies, blaming them for the killings of hundreds of thousands of civilians during a brutal war that began in 2011 when government troops crushed protests against his rule. Damascus says the sanctions are only making life harder for civilians.

The civil war has torn Syria apart, left more than half of the population displaced and large parts of the country out of government control. It has also crippled the centralized economy, increased unemployment and raised inflation.

Assad’s government relies almost exclusively on crude oil from Iran, a key ally of Damascus which has also sided with Syrian troops in the war. Tightening U.S. sanctions on Iran have added to the crisis in Syria.

A financial crisis in neighboring Lebanon, which had offered an economic lifeline for isolated Syria and a smuggling route, only made matters worse.

Once before last year, the Syrian government announced delays in supplies amid shortages and partially lifted subsidies on certain fuel products.

In a statement on Sunday, the Syrian ministry of petroleum and mineral resources said it will cut by 17% the amount of diesel and 24% the amount of fuel it is distributing to the government-controlled provinces until new supplies arrive. It offered no date for lifting the rationing.

“These measures are because of delays in the arrival of fuel products supplies because of the unjust U.S. sanctions against our country,” the ministry said. “They are to ensure that we can continue to secure the needs of our citizens and manage the available reserves as best as possible.”

The cost of one liter of unsubsidized gasoline sells at 1,050 Syrian pounds ($0.37) on the black market while the subsidized price is 450 Syrian pounds ($0.36.) Most Syrians make less than $100 a month.

Long queues at gas stations and hours of waiting have become a daily reality, and many opted for walking or parked their private vehicles. Others have reported reducing consumption of diesel for heating by more than half in the cold winter months.

Kayed Youssef, a 54-year old government employee in Damascus, said he has not moved his car in ten days. “I only move it in extreme necessity,” he said.

It gets harder for those outside the capital. In the southwestern city Sweida, fuel has not arrived since Thursday, Syrian Snack, an online news site reported.

The head of the public company for fuel products distribution, Ahmed Shamaat, said the reduction will be temporary until supplies arrive. He declined to give a date though, saying they are due to arrive “soon... depending on circumstances.”

——

Associated Press writer Sarah El Deeb in Beirut contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP World News, AP Business, AP Business - Corporate News, AP Business - Economy, AP Business - Financial Markets, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Utilities
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Protesters arrested for criticizing Kazakhstan's vote
Dozens of people protesting Kazakhstan's opposition-free election have been arrested in the country's capital and in its principal city
8:42AM ( 32 minutes ago )
Trump legacy on race shadowed by divisive rhetoric, actions
President Donald Trump repeatedly claimed in the final months of his presidency to have done more for Black Americans than anyone with the “possible exception” of Abraham Lincoln
8:40AM ( 33 minutes ago )
EXPLAINER: Why is Indonesia prone to plane crashes?
Saturday’s plane crash in Indonesia, in which a Sriwijaya Air Boeing 737-500 plunged into the Java Sea shortly after takeoff, has once again cast the limelight on the safety of the country’s aviation industry
8:38AM ( 36 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Australia, US, UK, Canada criticize Hong Kong mass arrests
The foreign ministers of Australia, the United States, Great Britain and Canada have issued a joint statement expressing serious concern about the arrest of 55 democracy activists and supporters in Hong Kong last week
3:13AM ( 6 hours ago )
Top Republican says Trump committed 'impeachable offenses'
President Donald Trump is facing growing Democratic momentum to impeach him a second time
12:09AM ( 9 hours ago )
Trump pressured Georgia to 'find the fraud' in earlier call
While election officials in Georgia were verifying signatures on absentee ballot envelopes in one metro-Atlanta county, President Donald Trump pressured a lead investigator to “find the fraud.”
8:45PM ( 12 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
The Latest: England invites over 80s to get virus vaccine
Thousands of people 80 and older have started receiving invitations to get a coronavirus vaccine shot in England
6:01AM ( 3 hours ago )
Asia Today: China reports 380 cases south of Beijing
More than 380 people have tested positive in a growing COVID-19 outbreak south of Beijing in China's Hebei province
4:42AM ( 4 hours ago )
US consulate a turning point for disputed Western Sahara
Plans by the United States to open a consulate in Western Sahara mark a turning point for the disputed and closely policed territory in North Africa
4:16AM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Business
With virus surging, Biden to speed release of COVID vaccines
President-elect Joe Biden will be taking a new direction to speed release of coronavirus vaccines when he assumes office Jan. 20
10:36PM ( 1 day ago )
Congress, LA take divergent paths after COVID test warning
The city of Los Angeles has said it will keep using a coronavirus test that federal regulators warned may produce false results while Congress, which has used the same test, is seeking an alternative
8:33PM ( 1 day ago )
LA, Congress take divergent paths after COVID test warning
The city of Los Angeles has said it will keep using a coronavirus test that federal regulators warned may produce false results while Congress, which has used the same test, is seeking an alternative
4:59PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Business - Corporate News
N. Korea threatens to build more nukes, cites US hostility
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has threatened to expand his nuclear arsenal while disclosing a list of high-tech weapons systems under development in response to what he called hostile American policy
2:11AM ( 1 day ago )
Stock market shakes off a slump to reach more record highs
Stocks shook off a midday slump and powered higher in the afternoon, bringing major indexes to record highs and leaving the market with solid gains for the first week of the year
5:15PM ( 1 day ago )
US consumer credit up 4.4% in November, best in 5 months
U.S. consumer borrowing rose 4.4% in November, its strongest showing in five months
4:55PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Business - Economy
Global shares climb on Wall Street rally, stimulus hopes
Global shares are rising on hopes for additional economic stimulus after the U.S. Congress confirmed Joe Biden as the winner of the presidential election
3:49AM ( 2 days ago )
Asian shares climb on Wall Street rally, stimulus hopes
Asian shares are mostly higher on hopes for additional economic stimulus after the U.S. Congress confirmed Joe Biden as the winner of the presidential election
2:23AM ( 2 days ago )
Asian shares mostly up on Wall Street rally, stimulus hopes
Asian shares are mostly higher on hopes for additional economic stimulus after the U.S. Congress confirmed Joe Biden as the winner of the presidential election
10:28PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Business - Financial Markets
The Latest: Austin will treat patients at convention center
Health officials in Austin, Texas, say they will open space in the Austin Convention Center for COVID-19 patients because they expect that the area’s health care system will soon be overwhelmed
6:48PM ( 14 hours ago )
The Latest: California sees record COVID-19 deaths
California health authorities are reporting a record high of 695 coronavirus deaths as many hospitals strain under unprecedented caseloads
3:49PM ( 17 hours ago )
The Latest: Israeli PM gets second dose of COVID-19 shot
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has received a second dose of the coronavirus vaccine after becoming the first Israeli to be inoculated last month
2:07PM ( 19 hours ago )
AP Business - Industries
Michael Apted, director of ‘Up’ documentary series, dies
Acclaimed British director Michael Apted has died
5:50PM ( 1 day ago )
Easing dispute, UAE announces reopening of borders to Qatar
The United Arab Emirates has announced that it will reopen its borders and airspace to Qatar after boycotting the tiny, energy-rich country alongside its Gulf allies since 2017
6:23AM ( 2 days ago )
US holds first oil lease sale for Alaska's Arctic refuge
The U.S. government has held its first-ever oil and gas lease sale for Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, an event critics labeled as a bust with major oil companies staying on the sidelines and a state corporation the main bidder
5:49PM ( 3 days ago )
AP Business - Utilities
Protesters arrested for criticizing Kazakhstan's vote
Dozens of people protesting Kazakhstan's opposition-free election have been arrested in the country's capital and in its principal city
8:42AM ( 32 minutes ago )
Trump legacy on race shadowed by divisive rhetoric, actions
President Donald Trump repeatedly claimed in the final months of his presidency to have done more for Black Americans than anyone with the “possible exception” of Abraham Lincoln
8:40AM ( 33 minutes ago )
EXPLAINER: Why is Indonesia prone to plane crashes?
Saturday’s plane crash in Indonesia, in which a Sriwijaya Air Boeing 737-500 plunged into the Java Sea shortly after takeoff, has once again cast the limelight on the safety of the country’s aviation industry
8:38AM ( 36 minutes ago )
What Biden's Cabinet picks say about how he plans to govern
Joe Biden promised that his presidency would mean a return to normalcy
8:24AM ( 50 minutes ago )
Gut-Behrami's veteran skills win tricky World Cup super-G
Lara Gut-Behrami showed her veteran skills to win a tricky World Cup super-G
7:35AM ( 1 hour ago )