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Wednesday September 11, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Wednesday September 11, 2013 MYT 3:23:03 PM
by philip hii
SIBU: A hike in bus fare is imminent following the recent increase of diesel by 20 sen.
Sarawak Bus Association (SBA) says although a fare review is done every five years with the next one being next year, it feels that it is necessary to increase it due to the current situation.
“The 20 sen increase is already a big burden for all bus operators,” said SBA chairman Lau Khing Seng, who is also the managing director of Lanang Road Bus Company.
He hinted that a 10% increase in bus fare would be fair and logical. The previous hike approved by the authorities in 2009 was also about 10%, he told The Star here yesterday.
Fare for air-conditioned stage buses is RM1.04 for first 3km and 18 sen for each following km.
For non-air-conditioned, it is 85 sen for
first 3km and 16.2 sen for each following kilometre.
“Unless the Government increases the fuel subsidy to bus companies, a fare hike is imminent and unavoidable,” he stressed.
He disclosed that the current monthly subsidy of 1,440 litres for a bus plying short distance routes and 2,880 litres for a bus plying long distance ones were not sufficient.
The subsidies should be 2,500 litres for the former and 5,000 litres for the latter, he said.
He also proposed that the Government consider investing in local bus companies so that they remain in business.
Separately, Sarawak Third, Sixth and Seventh Division Express Boat Association had resolved in a meeting last Friday that fare would be increased soon. Its chairman Lau Hieng Choon said the percentage of the hike would depend on each destination.
Sibu is the hub of riverine transpor-
tation with express boats plying between
here and Kanowit, Song, Kapit, Baleh, Belaga, Sarikei, Daro, Tanjong Manis, Pulau Bruit and Kuching.
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East Malaysia, Sarawak Bus Association (SBA) will not rule out applying for an early bus fare hike following the recent increase of 20sen per litre in dies
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