/ 26 October 2011

Over 1 000 SA restaurants close shop amid gas crisis

About 1 250 restaurants across South Africa had to close shop because of gas shortages, the Restaurants Association of SA (Rasa) said on Wednesday.

“Over 50% of our restaurants across the country had to close because they were out of gas,” said Rasa CEO Wendy Alberts.

She said restaurants, battling with increasing food and fuel prices, now had to contend with shortages in liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).

“Most restaurants converted to using gas because of the cost of electricity, and this shortage has been a major blow,” she said.

Rasa claims to represent 2 500 South African restaurants.

Alberts said some businesses were affected by the shortage as their landlords were responsible for supplying them with gas, which was not delivered to them.

“Now they will also have to see if they can take up their qualms with the National Consumer Commission.”

Last Thursday Afrox said there was a shortage in LPG in the country due to unplanned shutdowns in the local oil refinery industry.

It said the shortages had been confirmed by the SA Petroleum Industry Association (Sapia), which could not give a timeline as to when production from refineries would normalise. — Sapa