Sri Lanka to revise bus fare pricing formula

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka will revise a price formula under which bus fares are revised upward annually, following representation by operators, a minister said.

The Cabinet of Ministers had approved a proposal by Transport Minister Nimal Siripala de Silva to appoint an expert committee to study costs and come up with a new price formula, Media Minister Gayantha Karunathilake said.

From 2002, bus fare pricing was de-politicized and handed over to the National Transport Commission, which revised tariffs annually.

Sri Lanka’s bus operators have made representations that the price formula was inappropriate and that busses had to incur greater costs amid traffic jams.

Sri Lanka does not have peak pricing or night fares and tariffs are uniform across the day.

Low quality, hard sprung Indian-made busses built on truck chassis with narrow aisles ply Sri Lanka’s roads. Increasingly people have turned to their own transport.

Sri Lanka’s bus transport is tightly regulated with route licences. (Colombo/July29/2016)

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