(Bloomberg) -- Bolivia is sending its military to gas stations in a bid to curb the smuggling of subsidized fuel that, according to the government, is causing gasoline and diesel shortages across the country.

Soldiers will make sure that only vehicles registered in a digital system are allowed to fill up their tanks, Deputy Civil Defense Juan Carlos Calvimontes said on Wednesday. Protests against fuel as well as dollar shortages have been growing louder in the Andean nation, with trucker unions threatening road blockades if the situation persists.  

Bolivia has been struggling with falling oil production and a chronic lack of foreign currency that make it increasingly difficult for the government of leftist President Luis Arce to import the fuel that’s sold domestically at below-cost prices. 

“We have instructed the Armed Forces to assist in the fuel supply,” Arce told reporters Tuesday night. “Much of the current excess demand is due to fuel being diverted.”  

The president said he will meet with truck drivers over the weekend in a bid to appease them. A group of street vendors is also marching toward La Paz with similar demands. It is expected to arrive by Monday. 

Falling oil production has forced the country to import 56% of the gasoline and 85% of the diesel it consumes, according to Arce. The president has also sought to import oil from Russia during a recent visit to Moscow.

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