British troops will start delivering fuel in the next few days to alleviate problems with the supply of gas stations, business minister Kwasi Kwarteng said on Wednesday. According to the politician, “the situation is stabilizing”. – We deliver gasoline to gas stations, and yesterday deliveries equaled sales – he said.
He admitted that the last few days, when there were long lines in front of gas stations, and some of them had no fuel at all, were “difficult”. However, he denied there was a UK fuel supply crisis and said the situation was “stabilizing”.
The fuel crisis in Great Britain. Business Minister: I think the situation is stabilizing
Kwarteng said around 150 military drivers are ready to drive fuel tanks. Asked if the government should involve troops now rather than keeping them on standby, Kwarteng explained that it would take several days to start such an operation. “We decided to do it, and I think people will see some of the tanks being driven by soldiers in the next few days,” he said.
Asked if the decision to suspend competition in the fuel sector and issue short-term visas for foreign drivers proves there is a crisis in the UK, Kwarteng said: “No, I don’t think so. The last few days have been tough. We’ve seen a lot of queues, but I think that the situation is stabilizing. We deliver gasoline to gas stations, and yesterday deliveries were up to par with sales. “
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson addressed problems at gas stations for the first time on Tuesday, also trying to calm drivers down. He assured that people do not have to worry about it, but can go about their own business.
No drivers in UK
Both the UK government and the oil industry say the current gas station shortages are entirely the result of consumer behavior, after BP and other companies warned the government that they were considering rationing supplies due to a shortage of tanker drivers. This warning – as they indicate – caused car drivers to start buying fuel in panic.
According to representatives of the transport industry, about 100,000 are missing. truck drivers. After Brexit, around 25 ys left the UK. drivers, and the COVID-19 pandemic suspended the process of obtaining qualifications by new employees in the transport industry for almost a year.
For higher than usual fuel demand The British-Dutch petrochemical company Royal Dutch Shell drew attention. Over the weekend, the EG Group chain, operating at nearly 350 stations, introduced a gasoline purchase limit of up to £ 30 per customer. The BP concern announced the temporary closure of some stations. Problems with the availability of fuel at its stations were also reported by ExxonMobil.
In response to the oil crisis, the British government announced that it would grant up to 5,000. temporary three-month visas for tanker drivers and supply drivers to avoid a shortage of goods before Christmas. However, drivers from European Union countries quoted by the British media indicate that this offer is not very attractive, because three months is too short to be profitable.
Main photo source: PAP / EPA / FACUNDO ARRIZABALAGA