Sri Lankan Prime Minister: We have one day’s gas left

Car queue at gas station in Colombo


Sri Lankan Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe announced that there is only one day of gasoline left in the country, which has experienced the worst economic crisis in the last 70 years.

Addressing the public on television, Wickremesinghe said, “We only have one day’s gas at the moment. The next one or two months will be the most difficult period of our lives.”

Wickremesinghe, who took office last Thursday, said that they will however be able to buy petrol and diesel fuel from India on credit within a few days.

In his speech, Wickremesinghe announced that they need to find at least $75 million in a few days for basic import items, that the Central Bank has to print money for the salaries of public employees, and that Sri Lanka Airlines can be privatized.

Sri Lanka Airlines had a loss of about 130 million dollars last year.

The Sri Lankan economy has plunged into crisis after the Covid-19 pandemic, rising energy prices and populist tax cuts.

Due to the rising inflation in the country, which has no foreign exchange reserves, medicines, fuel and other basic consumer goods cannot be found.

In the capital Colombo, tricycle and other vehicles, which are the most common means of transportation in the city, formed long queues in front of gas stations.

Protests have been taking place in Sri Lanka for weeks against President Gotabaya Rajapaksa and his family members in the administration.

Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s older brother, Mahinda Rajapaksa, who became prime minister, resigned last week after clashes broke out between groups that supported him and protesters.

Nine people were killed and more than 300 injured in the clashes.


Wickremesinghe, in an interview with the BBC on Friday, stated that they will overcome the economic crisis and said that he will ensure that families can have three meals a day.

Calling for financial aid to the world, Wickremesinghe said, “There will be no hunger crisis. We will not go without food.”

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