Restriction On Sale Of Premium Gasoline May Benefit Electric Vehicles & Solar Panels; Embassies Concerned

The government of the Republic of Cuba plans to restrict the sale of premium gasoline at Republic of Cuba government-operated gasoline stations (CUPET-CIMEX) to vehicles rented by non-Republic of Cuba nationals who are visiting the country as tourists- with some reports suggesting that the restriction will become permanent once the supply of premium gasoline is exhausted.

The reasons are a reduction of fuel/gasoline imports from Venezuela and an increasing lack of foreign exchange with which to import premium gasoline from other sources.

Vehicles in the Republic of Cuba are primarily using 91-octane gasoline (1.20 CUC per liter) and diesel fuel; while newer more fuel-efficient, technologically-advanced, and less-polluting model vehicles, primarily those used in the tourism industry, by Republic of Cuba government-operated companies, by non-Republic of Cuba government-operated companies, non-governmental organizations (NGO's), and embassies, operate (sometimes manufacturers require/recommend) more efficiently when using 95-octane gasoline (1.40 CUC per liter).  One liter equals .264172 gallons.

Some embassies in the Republic of Cuba are contemplating reductions in personnel, both official and Republic of Cuba nationals, as the restriction upon the availability of gasoline may be a precursor to expanded, and more sustained, negatively impactful economic and commercial decisions by the government of the Republic of Cuba.  

At least one embassy is contemplating seeking authorization from the government of the Republic of Cuba to directly import premium gasoline; perhaps creating a consortium of embassies and designating one CUPET-CIMEX gasoline station solely for use by embassies.  

The installation and use of solar panels to generate electricity and lessen the impact upon and dependence to the Republic of Cuba government-operated electrical grid has increased; the embassy of Canada has installed solar panels.

On 9 February 2017, Miami, Florida-based Premier Automotive Export (PAE), Ltd., a subsidiary of Grand Cayman-based Cayman Automotive (, delivered directly from the United States to the Republic of Cuba the first United States-assembled Nissan Leaf for use by the Embassy of Guyana under a 9 January 2017 license from the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) of the States Department of Commerce authorizing the export of electric vehicles and vehicle chargers from the United States to the Republic of Cuba.  One (1) vehicle charger has been delivered and three (3) are awaiting delivery.

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