The Bongo MP Edward Bawa has warned that the Russia-Ukraine war will soon cause Ghana to run out of diesel by May if the government does not act quickly to make sure there is a continuous supply of the commodity.
Mr Bawa, who is a member of the Mines and Energy Committee of Parliament told Nasaria Abdul Rahman that this is because the sanctions imposed on Russia as a result of the war in Ukraine will take full effect on 22 April 2022.
In his analysis, since diesel is not accepted in Europe and most parts of the advanced world due to it is environmentally-unfriendly nature, “a lot of countries do not produce” that fuel, making Russia one of the few major diesel-producing countries.
“Now, because Russia is on an embargo, and there are serious sanctions against the country, Russia is unable to export diesel to other parts of the world. That explains why we have even started experiencing a shortage and that’s why now diesel has a higher price than petrol when you go to the fuel stations because gradually, the supply of diesel onto the market is getting smaller, so, the small quantities that are available on the market, most of the cargoes are diverting to Europe instead of to West Africa and, so, that is the signal and by 22 April, the full effect of the sanctions will be there and therefore, we’ll have challenges in getting that fuel”, the opposition MP warned.
Mr Bawa said the Bank of Ghana must also make sure the cedi is stable enough if the country is to leverage that to get more diesel.
He said the central bank must be able to “guarantee a continuous supply of foreign exchange at a fixed price” warning: “If we are not able to do that and do not look at other ways of finding diesel post-April 22, by the beginning of May, and that is 1 May, Ghana will run short of a lot of fuel, particularly diesel and diesel is definitely linked to public transport”.
“If you look at all the vehicles that carry food from farm gates to the marketplace they use diesel. Most of the passenger vehicles use diesel. So, what it would then mean is that the people who would be hit hardest would be the vulnerable”, he noted.