No more regular gas on the market, fishermen threaten protests

Fish­er­men are plan­ning to protest out­side the Of­fice of the Prime Min­is­ter next week be­cause reg­u­lar gas is no longer avail­able in the coun­try.

Vice pres­i­dent of the Clax­ton Bay Fish­ing As­so­ci­a­tion Bhadase Sook­nanan warned that with­out reg­u­lar gas, the fu­el used in the out­board en­gines of their boats, the lo­cal fish­ing in­dus­try will be oblit­er­at­ed. Sook­nanan, who owns two boats and em­ploys five peo­ple, said he used to spend $200 on gas for one fish­ing trip but that cost will in­crease to $500.

“How are we to live? Why are they try­ing to break the backs of the fish­er­men?” he asked.

“We al­ready strug­gling. Many peo­ple can­not af­ford to buy gas. Now they stopped reg­u­lar many peo­ple will be un­able to af­ford to fish.”

Sook­nanan,who called for the in­ter­ven­tion of Prime Min­is­ter Dr Kei­th Row­ley, said some pro­vi­sion must be made to safe­guard the fish­ing in­dus­try. In ad­di­tion to high­er fish prices, the sit­u­a­tion could lead to a re­duc­tion in the num­ber of fish­er­men,he said.

In a state­ment yes­ter­day, the Min­istry of En­er­gy and En­er­gy In­dus­tries an­nounced the ces­sa­tion of the sup­ply of reg­u­lar gaso­line (RON 83) on the lo­cal mar­ket.

The Min­istry said fol­low­ing the clo­sure of the Petrotrin re­fin­ery the last stocks of reg­u­lar gaso­line were dis­trib­uted on De­cem­ber 7.

“The de­mand for reg­u­lar gaso­line has fluc­tu­at­ed be­tween 8,000 bar­rels to 10,000 bar­rels per month.

Paria Fu­el Trad­ing Com­pa­ny which is now re­spon­si­ble for the sup­ply of liq­uid pe­tro­le­um fu­els on the lo­cal mar­ket has in­formed that im­ports of reg­u­lar gaso­line (RON 83) would be un­eco­nom­i­cal as the vol­umes are small, the fu­el is not a stan­dard grade and is rarely pro­duced by most re­gion­al re­finer­ies,” the Min­istry said.

Reporter: Radhica De Silva

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