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Gasoline Shortage Hits Bali

Some of Bali's Gas Stations Close Temporarily as Supplies of Premium Fuel Becomes Critical.

(5/19/2007) A number of gas stations were forced to temporarily suspend operations when new supplies of premium gasoline failed to arrive in Bali.

The shortage, which lasted for 3- 4 days during the second week of May 2007, was blamed for 30-40 minute lines at the gas stations that stayed open to distribute diminishing fuel supplies.

Local managers for Pertamina, the state-owned oil company, blamed the fuel shortage on the late arrival of a fuel tanker from Singapore carrying 4,000 kiloliters of premium gas. That tanker, originally destined for Balikpapan in Kalimantan, was diverted to Bali when local fuel reserves became critical.

Additional fuel supplies were also urgently ordered and dispatched from Pertamina stocks in Cilicap (West Java) and Balikpapan (Kalimantan).

An Island Thirsty for Fuel

According to Pertamina, Bali's network of 125 gas stations sell 1,500 kiloliters of premium gas every day with a minimum reserve of less than 3 days or 4,000 kiloliters held at the Company's fuel depot in Manggis, East Bali.

Why local Pertamina officials failed to anticipate the recent shortage of premium remains a mystery. Fortunately, all gas stations in Bali had returned to normal operations by May 18, 2007.