NEWS

4 Bus Companies Yet To Decide On New Fare

Last month, the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (FCCC) announced that adult bus fares will increase by 7 cents per stage from today.
10 Feb 2020 11:16
4 Bus Companies Yet To Decide On New Fare

At least four bus companies operating in Suva have yet to meet and finalise whether they will increase bus fare.

The Nasese Buses Company, Central Buses Company, Shore Buses Company and Raiwaqa Buses have yet to finalise on how much they will increase their fares.

Last month, the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission (FCCC) announced that adult bus fares will increase by 7 cents per stage from today.

The fare increase comes after the reviewing of a submission by the Fiji Bus Operators Association to increase bus fares, and also after a series of public consultations around the country.

Nasese Buses Company spokesperson Jack Kumar said they would meet today to finalise their new bus fare charges.

On the other hand, Tacirua Buses Company has confirmed that they would be charging less than the newly established maximum fare.

The maximum express fare from Suva to Nausori is $2.11, but the bus company has agreed to charge $2 for adults.

FCCC chief executive officer Joel Abraham said the increase served as a ceiling to protect vulnerable Fijians.

He said an increase in the maximum bus fare of 7 cents was necessary for the sustainability of the Fijian bus industry.

Fiji Bus Operators Association President Nisar Ali Shah said despite being unhappy with the 7 cents increase, they would continue to serve the nation’s interest and would accept what the outcome would be.

“In this industry, we don’t make millions of dollars, we need to make money to keep us afloat and we also try our best to have returns on our investments,” Mr Shah said.

“We are after a formula that has been used by FCCC to arrive at the conclusion of a 7 cents increase.

“Not many bus companies are happy with the increase but we will still go ahead with it.”

Mr Shah pleaded for sensible dialogue with the commission in order to understand the formula used with the 7 cents increase per stage.

“We have written to them and we hope to have a response from them soon on the matter.

“We have a lot of struggles too as bus companies; we have drivers who come in early morning to start their shift, fuel prices increase and many other issues that we have to deal with, but at the end of the day it’s the nation’s interest not more of the company’s.”

Mr Shah said Vodafone Fiji had already updated its database and the switch to the new bus fare database came into effect from midnight.

School students bus fares will increase from May 4 this year.

Edited by Ivamere Nataro

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