FBOA asked to justify bus fare proposal

Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission CEO Joel Abraham. Picture: FT FILE

THE Fiji Bus Operators Association (FBOA) needs to provide full financial information to accompany its proposal for an increase in fares.

This is the word from independent bus fare review committee chairman Joel Abraham after a meeting with bus operators at the Fijian Competition and Consumer Commission office in Suva yesterday.

He said they couldn’t justify any fare increase as proposed by the association in the absence of complete financial information.

The meeting was attended by 48 members of the association.

Mr Abraham said any changes made to bus fares would affect thousands of families in Fiji and that there was a need for a review to be done before any decision was made.

“We have asked the bus owners to go back and furnish the full information and only upon receipt of full information, we will proceed,” he said.

FBOA president Richard Lal said the industry was in desperate need for a bus fare review.

“Our demands are just cost adjustments on how the costs have gone up in the past 10 years and we need to adjust that into the pricing factor. The average fare increase we are asking for is 15.34 per cent and not the 47 per cent that was quoted in the media this morning,” he said.

Mr Abraham said the association needed to comply with the requirement for a cost analysis to be carried out.

“They have said there is an increase in costs so I had asked them to give the 2017 financial report, which they have, but only a handful have given the 2018 financial reports. We have said to them that once they give us full information, we will work very fast,” Mr Abraham added.

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