Some of Cairo’s gas stations have been temporarily turned into paid car parks, in an attempt to drum up business amid a squeeze on fuel supplies.
With pumps running dry, entrepreneurial workers at some stations decided to charge motorists to park, rather than fill up, especially in the busy downtown Cairo area.
Egypt’s provinces currently face a stifling crisis in diesel supplies, while gasoline has become more scarce over the past two weeks. The problem has reached Cairo where gas stations were already receiving limited amounts of gasoline.
“We haven’t received any gasoline or diesel in days, and in the absence of parking spaces we actually started receiving car owners,” said Mahmoud Saleh, who works at a gas station in downtown Cairo.
“Some of the workers at the stations don’t get monthly salaries, but would earn tips from drivers and car owners,” he added.
According to Saleh, there are no set prices for the newly invented car parks. The area is hub to many governmental entities, and is therefore constantly busy. Closed streets in Tahrir and Kasr al-Ainy areas aggravated the traffic.
The problem may be easing, however. The Egyptian Ministry of Petroleum announced an increase of gasoline and diesel supplies last week. The daily diesel supply increased seven percent reaching 37,000 tons, while the daily gasoline supply increased 20 percent reaching 18,100 tons, according to a statement released by the ministry.