The Fiji Times
13 bus companies seek fare increase
THIRTEEN bus companies have made a submission to the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission, asking for an increase in the bus fare prices.
The companies are Tacirua Transport Ltd, Shore Buses Ltd, Cityline Buses Ltd, Raiwaqa Buses Ltd, Citiline Buses Ltd, Nairs Transport Company Ltd, Nakasi Davuilevu Buses Pte Ltd, Nasese Buses Ltd, Island Buses Ltd, George Transport Ltd, Taunovo Transport Ltd, Shankar Singh Transport Ltd, and Dee Cees Bus Service Ltd.
In their submission dated August 22, the companies have outlined a number of reasons why they need a price increase which include an increase in fuel prices, an increase in spare parts, an increase in the cost of labour, no standing policy in buses and traffic congestion.
“Since the bus industry has a very high capital expenditure this makes our problem bigger than ever with the government without consultation moving the Euro requirements from Euro 2 to Euro 4,” states the submission.
“This was an unnecessary move as we do not know of any study carried out on the amount of carbon footprint produced by our industry and the degree of impact it has on our climate.
“This industry needs at least 20 per cent net margin to run properly. More newer buses, better-paid staff and to maintain the best safety standards.
“The number of passengers have reduced compared to previous years due to LTA (Land Transport Authority) issuing LM and other permits that directly compete with us. Operators have objected this for many years knowing this would affect our loadings yet the LTA continued to issue permits.
“It is very obvious that an urgent rise in bus fare and government subsidies is necessary for our survival. We cannot wait for LTA to change its policy on issuing permits or start policing more for the illegal operations with drivers taking cash.”
FCCC is now seeking public submissions before making a determination.