CORIDAN – The Galactic Exchange has been left reeling at the shortage of dilthium prompted by industrial action on Verona III.
Already, the sudden loss of a key dilithium supplier has caused the trade value of the scarce resource to increase dramatically across the Federation as major shipyards seek to secure their dwindling stockpiles. The Merchant Marines have voiced concern at the strict controls on civilian distribution of the mineral, which is critical to sustaining conventional warp drive.
“How are we supposed to make a living?” asked one freighter owner, Captain Threll. “If [the Federation] end up rationing, then you just know Starfleet will take the lion’s share.”
The friction between the Merchant Marines and Starfleet was not reduced by Starfleet’s reluctance to detail their contingency plans in the case of a dilithium shortage, forcing many traders to expand their trade routes to include resupplying outside Federation space.
“We’re having to buy our crystals off the Klingons now who have already started pushing their prices up. I don’t understand how the Federation could have let the situation get so dire!” protested Captain Antiona Givelle. “I’ve got twenty passenger ships, and already half are running under warp five.”
With no immediate end to the crisis in sight, attention has turned to positive investments made towards projects at the Daystrom Research Institute working on renewable sources of propulsion. A statement from the institute, however, reminded interested parties that any new developments were still a long way from the general market, extinguishing hopes that a scientific breakthrough could reduce the deepening market troubles.
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