Plea for a change | Bus company pleads for increase in school bus fare
7 June, 2023, 6:00 pm
A Nadi bus company owner is pleading for a change in the school bus fare system. In his National Budget submissions, Westbus (Nadi) Ltd managing director Ajay Kumar said Government should consider increasing bus fares.
“In Fiji, the bus industry is privately owned and operated,” Mr Kumar said.
“Overseas, the bus industry is operated by the Government or councils and it is heavily funded by taxpayers.
“We appreciate certain subsidy by previous Government such as duty free buses, reduction of duty on tires and parts.
“However, the entire ball game has changed now due to increased daily operating costs with increase in freight costs and Euro 4 emission buses.”
He said it was critical that Government considered their submissions especially for companies based in the Western Division.
“Duty free buses need to continue with zero fiscal duty and zero VAT on freight.
“The diesel rebate of 18 per cent to bus companies based on revenue of below $2.5 million to assist small to medium bus companies in the west.
“School bus fare to be increased to at least 75 per cent of the adult fare rather than 50 per cent of the adult fare as our operating costs is same.
“Bus companies are to remain zero rated to assist the passengers as well and importation of overseas to retreat tires to be uplifted with duty free for bus free for the bus industry.”