The shortage of fuel in the Khmer Republic has more than halved the number of vehicles on Phnom Penh streets.
The shortage of fuel in the Khmer Republic has more than halved the number of vehicles on Phnom Penh streets. Stocks have been dwindling since the Communists began attacking the Mekong River supply line.
The capital's population of 11/2 million depends on the river for all it's fuel and much of the military equipment and free rice sent in under the United States aid programme. The river convoys have been losing more than one ship in 10 on every run since mid-March.
The government has imposed a ben on the sale of fuel to private users to conserve the dwindling stocks. Military, government and diplomatic vehicles are receiving rations and Phnom Penh's fleet of taxi-buses are allowed about 21/2 gallons each time they can reach a station that's open.
Only four or five stations can sell each day and each station is given a turn. A number of private vehicles are still on the roads. These are mostly running on fuel bought on the black market for about six times the official rate.