Cuba bracing for fuel shortages, blackouts

    (Photo Credit: Reuters/Alexandre Meneghini)

    Cuban President Miguel Díaz-Canel has warned the country to expect problems with fuel supplies in the coming weeks.

    According to the BBC, the President said the distribution, especially of diesel, was being badly affected by US sanctions against Venezuela, which is Cuba’s principal oil supplier.

    He also warned of likely blackouts next week, suggesting that people should work from home.

    Despite this though, Mr Díaz-Canel said Cuba was in a better position than in the 1990s – which are widely considered the years of extreme austerity and blackouts.

    That time – known as the Special Period – followed the collapse of the Soviet Union, a key donor to the Communist-run island.

    In May, Cuba announced rationing of more products amid shortages it blamed on the US trade embargo and hoarders.

    In 2017, US President Donald Trump reimposed some trade and travel restrictions, although he kept the embassy open in Havana and did not end flights to the country.