The G9 coalition of armed gangs ended the siege it had imposed on one of the main oil terminals, allowing distribution with prices almost three times higher
After months of shortages, the blockade in Haiti was lifted and fuel returned to the island, although with sharp increases (REUTERS)
After months of shortages, this Saturday The blockade of one of the main oil terminals in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, has ended, and fuel has returned to the island. However, despite the initial excitement of the drivers – who formed long lines to buy fuel – the situation has been partially alleviated as prices have shot up.
As the authorities had warned some time ago, due to the sustained lack of the product, now buying a gallon of gasoline costs 570 gourdes -$4.13-, 670 gourdes for diesel -4.85 dollars- and 665 gourdes for paraffin -4.82 dollars-. These values contrast with the previous ones, which placed a gallon of fuel at just 250 of the local currency -1.8 dollars-.
However, compared to at 4,500 and even 5,000 gourdes-36.2 dollars- that many drivers have come to pay in recent months in the parallel market, the prices that are available at gas stations are a kind of relief. Many have even been encouraged to baptize November 12 as “National Fuel Day”.
The long and peaceful lines – something unthinkable given the violence and the acute crisisHaiti's economic, political and economic crisis – were not seen throughout the country since only a few gas stations opened their doors this Saturday. In any case, in those that did begin to distribute the product, there was a strong police presence in order to prevent any type of disturbance.
This Saturday, gas stations on the island resumed their activities thanks to the end of the blockade on the main oil terminal on the island (EFE)
The resumption of supply also impacted the number of people, cars and public transport vehicles that circulated through the streets of Port-au-Prince, in contrast to the scenes of days gone by when calm reigned on the streets of the metropolitan area. This, in turn, will allow the resumption of economic activities in general, which have been operating at a slower pace for weeks.
This scenario was possible thanks to the powerful coalition of armed gangs G9 lifted the blockade that weighed on the country's main oil terminal. The group, led by former police officer Jimmy Cherisier, announced days ago that it would end the action against Varreux, despite not having negotiated anything with the authorities.
In this context, during the last three days, 389 tankers have been seen leaving the terminal, filled with fuel and ready to supply gas stations all over the island . Since then, 1,890,300 gallons of diesel and 1,230,234 gallons of gasoline have already been distributed, initially destined for hospitals< /b>.
In the last three days, 389 tankers left Varreux, with 1,890,300 gallons of diesel and 1,230,234 gallons of gasoline (EFE)
The Government even decreed last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday as days for refueling at pumps, while today's day was dedicated to distribution.
Varreux has the 70% of Haiti's fuel storage capacity, leaving only 30% distributed throughout the rest of the country. That is why the blockade at this terminal led to an unprecedented humanitarian crisis in the country.
The lack of fuel not only forced many people to stop their activities, as well as paralyze trade, but also affected the work in hospitals and many were forced to close. This occurred in the midst of an cholera outbreak that was intensified by poor medical care.
The lack of fuel led to an unprecedented humanitarian crisis in Haiti (REUTERS)
On the other hand, it affected essential activities such as the normal teaching of classes in schools and the cost of essential products skyrocketed and public transport, whose costs have doubled and even tripled.
“We have to recover the prices of food (…) People don't have the means to pay,” a resident of Port-au-Prince told the EFE news agency.
Although this measure meant an important advance in the situation in the country, the violence continues to be the order of the day. There are still more than 200 armed gangs that control more territory every day and every week leave dead as a result of the battles they wage.
(With information from EFE)