16th October 11:16 AM
Increase in fuel prices forces bus operators to seek increase in bus fares
By Iva Danford
Sunday 15/07/2018

A rise in fuel price for the third quarter in a row has forced bus operators to seek an increase in fares for the first time in more than nine years to keep the industry viable.

Fiji Bus Operators Association President Richard Lal says the government and bus industry regulators have demanded improved transparency and accountability and this has been achieved with the introduction of electronic ticketing.

Lal says the bus operators have also been expected to improve service and fleet standards, however to continue to do that they urgently need to begin making a fair return, especially considering the other increased costs of doing business, such as driver wages and spare parts.

He says these costs which is made worse by increasing fuel price, have risen in the past decade but fares do not reflect these changed circumstances.

Lal says bus operators hope to continue working closely with the government to address the issue of rising costs in a fair and equitable manner for the industry and the travelling public.

He says their services in Fiji are largely operated by people whose families have been in the business for many decades and these operators share a close bond with the people they serve.

Lal says it has come to a point for many operators that in order to continue improving their services and remain viable, they need to be able to see some returns for their efforts.

He says the bus operators hope to be able to address this issue before it becomes problematic and begin to affect business confidence in the sector.

The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission says Fiji is directly affected by the world market prices for both refined oils and LPG and any changes to the world market prices will be reflected in Fuel and LPG prices in Fiji.

The Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission will conduct the next fuel and LPG price

Prices of unleaded petrol, premix, kerosene, diesel and LPG products will increase from today.

This was after the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission reviewed the prices.

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