The Government of the United Kingdom values this Monday additional measures such as resorting to the Army to transport fuel to national gas stations, which are running out of supplies due to fear of shortages unleashed in the country.
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Several local media such as the BBC have reported this Monday that Prime Minister Boris Johnson will convene a meeting of his Government this day after the head of Companies, Kwasi Kwarteng, announced this Sunday the temporary suspension of the application of the law competition for the fuel industry to facilitate that companies can “share information” and “optimize” the supply of fuel to gas stations.
The Government has urged citizens to be “sensible” when filling their tanks in order to avoid the long lines of vehicles waiting to refuel. Since last Thursday the oil company BP announced the closure of some of its stations due to not being able to bring fuel to the pumps, gas stations throughout the country have registered long lines of vehicles trying to fill their tanks and many of them have been seen also forced to close.
Gordon Balmer, executive director of the Association of Petroleum Retailers, told British broadcaster LBC on Monday that some fuel brands are seeing 90% of their establishments run out of deposits.
The British Transport Minister, Grant Shapps, assured this Sunday that there is “a lot of fuel” in the United Kingdom’s reserves and that the closure of service stations is due to the lack of labor in transport and the increase in the lawsuit for fear of shortages.
“It is important that we know that in this country, with six refineries and 47 storage facilities, there is a sufficient quantity of fuel, there is no shortage,” the minister stressed in an interview with the channel. Sky News. “If people behave normally and fill (their tanks) when they normally would, then there will be no queues and there will be no shortage at the pumps,” said Shapps.
In a joint statement issued this Sunday by Shell, ExxonMobile and Greenergy, their representatives have also reiterated that the pressures on supplies are being caused by “temporary spikes in consumer demand, and not by a national shortage of oil.”
The Transport Minister has argued that the shortage of carriers is not unique to the UK. “In Poland, for example, 123,000 drivers are missing,” said Shapps, who stressed that “there is no single simple solution for this.”
The leader of the Labor opposition, Keir Starmer, has suggested that part of the problem is due to Brexit: “It was known that when we left the European Union there would be a need for a contingency plan to deal with this situation,” he told the BBC and has considered that “the Government does not have any plan”.
Last weekend 5,000 temporary visas were announced for foreign drivers to fill vacancies in the United Kingdom in the next three months although the transport employers have called the measure insufficient and have insisted that about 100,000 additional workers are needed.
The president of the Association of Petroleum Retailers, Brian Madderson, told BBC Radio 4 on Monday that the problem of empty gas stations affects more “concentrated urban areas than rural areas at the moment.”
Although these gas stations “are being refueled now, the number of fuel tanks they receive is less than what they need to be adequately supplied at a normal level of between 40 and 50%,” he observed.