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Wednesday February 1st, 2023

Sri Lanka mulls hi-tech circulator buses without conductor: Minister

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is in discussions with a private technology group to set up a circulator route in the city using modern buses without a conductor in  bid to upgrade public transport, Transport Minister Bandula Gunawardana said.

“We are in discussions with a technology group in the Trace City to start a modern city bus service,” Minister Gunawardana told EconomyNext.

“The buses will only have a driver. But the current laws do not allow public buses to be operated without a conductor. Se we have to change the law.”

Circulator buses typically operate on both directions on a circular route, they have simplified charging. Two routes may cross each other, somewhat similar to the way MRT systems work.

Sri Lanka has a tightly regulated public bus service with a bewildering array of routes. State regulations typically stifle innovation. Due to tight regulations including price regulation, Sri Lanka’s three wheeler taxis have boomed.

Until a recent currency collapse, the worst in the history of the island’s intermediate regime central bank, which has destroyed living standards of the people more than in previous crises, buses were losing customers to three wheeler taxi’s and private transport, mostly motor-cycles.

Quality of public buses is low – except on expressways – due to regulated pricing and a rigid licensing system, critics say.

Three wheeler taxis on the other hand have rapidly innovated into ride sharing. (Colombo/Oct27/2022)

Comments (5)

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  1. sacre blieu says:

    Queer way of pricing for public transport and travel. The bus fares for the same distance are phenomenal compared to the train travel charges. Does it mean that the railway has not charged enough or the transport cost should be reduced? More so the trains cannot handle such a huge crowd during peak hours and passengers hanging onto the footboards or on the roof are exposed to severe danger.

  2. Kumar says:

    This guy is bluffing again. Sri Lanka doesn’t have the infrastructure for projects of that nature. Some idiots cancelled the first elevated trolley system and now blowing hot air.

  3. puvan NAGALINGAM says:

    The problem is overcrowding in buses like sardines.

  4. veddah says:

    Another gimmick. in England, it was necessary because the population was going down and there were fewer people willing to become conductors. The strikes in England at the moment are because of safety concerns about reducing the number of conductors even more

  5. Cassim Zarook says:

    Wild dreams, with the post and position changing.
    This is possible when a family can live with Rs. 2500/- a month.

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Comments (5)

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. sacre blieu says:

    Queer way of pricing for public transport and travel. The bus fares for the same distance are phenomenal compared to the train travel charges. Does it mean that the railway has not charged enough or the transport cost should be reduced? More so the trains cannot handle such a huge crowd during peak hours and passengers hanging onto the footboards or on the roof are exposed to severe danger.

  2. Kumar says:

    This guy is bluffing again. Sri Lanka doesn’t have the infrastructure for projects of that nature. Some idiots cancelled the first elevated trolley system and now blowing hot air.

  3. puvan NAGALINGAM says:

    The problem is overcrowding in buses like sardines.

  4. veddah says:

    Another gimmick. in England, it was necessary because the population was going down and there were fewer people willing to become conductors. The strikes in England at the moment are because of safety concerns about reducing the number of conductors even more

  5. Cassim Zarook says:

    Wild dreams, with the post and position changing.
    This is possible when a family can live with Rs. 2500/- a month.

Sri Lanka bond yields down at close

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s bond yields were down at close following a bond auction on Wednesday, dealers said while a guidance peg for interbank transactions remained unchanged.

“The rates were steady at the auction,” a dealer said.

“This can be a signal to the market saying the rates will go down in the future.”

A bond maturing on 01.07.2025 closed at 32.40/60 percent, down from yesterday’s 32.60/85 percent.

A bond maturing on 01.05.2027 closed at 29.10/35 marginally down from yesterday’s 29.20/75 percent.

The Central Bank’s guidance peg for interbank US dollar transactions remained unchanged at 362.14 rupees against the US dollar.

Commercial banks offered dollars for telegraphic transfers at 371.38 rupees on Friday, data showed. (Colombo/Feb 01/2022)

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Sri Lanka bill auction hits pothole after 2025 bond spike

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka sold only 45 billion rupees in Treasury bills at Wednesday’s auction after offering 120 billion rupees, data from the state debt office showed, amid market confusion over a spike in a two year bond at an earlier action.

30.1 billion rupees of 3-month bills were sold at 29.91 percent, unchanged from a week earlier after offering 60 billion rupees for auction.

5.1 billion rupees of 6-month bills were sold at 28.72 percent, flat after offering 30 billion.

10.3 billion rupees of 12-month bills were sold at 27.72 percent after offering 30 billion.

Phase II subscriptions have been opened.

The market was foxed after the 2025 bonds were accepted at sharply higher yield than market on January 30, dealer said.

There was further confusion as the there was an outright purchase of 2025 at around 29 percent earlier in January.

Some investors speculated that the authorities were trying to drive more buyers towards short end bonds as bill volumes were getting larger. (Colombo/Feb01/2023)

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Sri Lanka services exports down 5.9-pct in 2022

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s services exports were estimated to have fallen 5.9 percent to 1,876.3 million US dollars, the island’s Export Development Board said.

Services exports estimated is made up of ICT/BPM, construction, financial services, transport and logistics.

There are more than 500 ICT companies, the EDB said.

Sri Lanka’s merchandise exports were up 4.6 percent to US dollars 13.1 billion dollars in 2022 from 2021.

Sri Lanka’s goods exports are slowing amid lower growth in Western markets. (Colombo/ Feb 01/2023)

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