Mexico: Fuel Price Increase Leads To Protests

A fuel price increase of more than 20 percent has led to protests in Mexico. The price increase was announced on January 1, when oil company Pemex was having problems supplying gas stations across the country.

The fuel price increase, which is now being called gasolinazo, has led to protests in some cities. Protesters have blocked roads and looted shops, forcing the working service stations to close. The announcement of the fuel price increase was not well received and protests have continued since. Those who use vehicles as part of their job have joined the protests across the country. Public transportation has been canceled in some areas as protests have blocked roads and highways.

Pemex mentioned yesterday that the roads and highways blocked had created a critical situation in three states. The people protesting are not happy with the 20 percent increase, which they say will hurt their pockets even more because the salaries are low.

The fuel price increase, announced on January 1, is necessary for the country according to officials. Environment Secretary Rafael Pacchiano said he agreed with the fuel price increase. He believes the higher prices will encourage the use of green energy across the country.

On Wednesday, there were reports of 20 protests across the country, according to police. Over 250 people have been arrested since the protests began. One of the largest gas station operators in the country said yesterday that it would temporarily close at least 400 of its 1,800 outlets if the insecure conditions continued on Wednesday.

Hundreds of people marched in Mexico City on New Year’s Day to protest the gasoline prices. Long lines at pumps had already formed as Pemex was having trouble supplying gas stations across the country. The population is concerned about the fuel price because it will raise the price of everything in the country.

The strong rise in prices had already been predicted days before as the country would be deregulating gas in 2017. The country increased the prices by 20 percent on January 1 and while the government has promised that the prices will decrease, some of the population is not happy as they say their salaries are not enough to cover this increase.