A jet fuel shortfall at Africa’s busiest airport will be investigated to ensure no shortages during the 2010 football World Cup, South Africa’s energy minister said Thursday.
Minister Dipuo Peters announced a multi-sector team to probe the dropping of fuel stocks at OR Tambo International airport to a two-day stockpile which the airport said was due to interruptions in the country’s supply network.
“The minister wants to ensure that we are ready for 2010. She has asked all of them to work together and ensure that there is sufficient supply of jet fuel at the airport,” said spokesman Bheki Khumalo.
“It is a serious concern about the the period leading to and after 2010, we need to insist and make sure that we don’t have a repeat of this.”
A five-day stockpile is the airport’s standard reserve to offset any pauses in the supply system.
The shortfall only affects OR Tambo, the busiest airport on the continent, with 18 million passengers and 300,000 tons of cargo passing through its terminals annually, he said.
The airport has said a request for airlines operating from OR Tambo, which averages 600 flights a day on average, to reduce fuel usage would remain in place until reserves normalised.
Stocks are expected to return to normal next week.
The airport is expected to channel the bulk of football fans, estimated to reach 460,000 by organisors, at next year’s 2010 World Cup.
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