BEIRUT: Fears of power cuts were alleviated Monday after caretaker Energy Minister Cezar Abi Khalil said that fuel for Lebanon's power plants was secured from Algeria.
Ships docked on Lebanon's shores will begin unloading fuel aimed at refueling the Zouk and Jiyyeh power plants, Abi Khalil said.
The Algerian company, Sonatrach, had refused to release the fuel pending payment from the Lebanese government. Caretaker Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil had argued that the disbursement of funds requires parliament's approval of a recently issued decree. The decree was co-signed by the Finance and Energy Ministers along with President Michel Aoun, Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri.
On Monday, while on a trip to Paris, Hariri held talks with Algerian officials to resolve the matter after the state-owned Electricity Du Liban warned that of increasing power cuts as a result of a cut of over 300 Megawatts in production amid lack of fuel oil.
The recently secured fuel from Algerian company Sonatrach is expected to recharge the Turkish power barrages docked on Lebanon's shores, lent by Turkey.
Lebanon continues to suffer from frequent power outages due to a production deficit estimated at 1500 Megawatt, even after taking into account the different power barrages brought in from Turkey.
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