AMERICAN SAMOA GOVERNMENT MOVING TO SECURE UNINTERRUPTED SUPPLY OF JET FUEL

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By Fili Sagapolutele

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (Sept. 1, 2000 PIDP/CPIS)--The territorial government is working with local airlines and airline agents to assure an uninterrupted supply of jet fuel at Pago Pago International Airport.

Recently the government's Office of Petroleum Management wrote to airlines operating in and out of Pago Pago International Airport and airline agents to provide the government with "a schedule of your anticipated customers for the next 90 days, their estimated times of arrival and approximately how much fuel will be needed."

The move was prompted by "a sudden influx of unscheduled requests for refueling in American Samoa" over the past three weeks, including those related to the recent airport fuel worker's strike at the Faa'a International Airport in Pape'ete, Tahiti.

Although the strike is over in Tahiti, the government wants to be prepared for similar circumstances in the future.

The government is looking, in particular, at the upcoming Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. In the event of an emergency, it wants an uninterrupted supply of jet fuel is on hand.

"We plan not to run out of fuel," said Sione Kava, the government's Chief Petroleum Officer. "But if our circumstances force us to ration jet fuel at the airport, our priority begins with our regularly scheduled customers."

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