Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Letter From LTA - ERP And Fare Revisions Not Linked

Letter From LTA - ERP And Fare Revisions Not Linked

We refer to Ms Kwok Shwu Ching's letter 'Why subject buses to ERP?' (my paper, July 18), which suggested that Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) be waived for public buses.

The writer said that ERP charges compel public-transport operators to pass on this cost to commuters in the form of fare revisions.

We would like to clarify that ERP and public-transport fare revisions are not linked.

The objective of ERP is to provide for smooth-flowing roads by managing traffic congestion. It is an equitable system that charges vehicles according to how much they add to congestion, based on the amount of road space they occupy.

Public buses are subject to ERP because, like all other road users, they occupy road space and contribute to traffic congestion.

Public-transport fares, on the other hand, are capped by a formula based on macro-economic factors, such as national inflation and wage increases, rather than operators' specific costs, such as ERP.

Operators would have to manage their costs more efficiently, and cannot simply pass on their costs to commuters.

The Government's pro-public transport approach exempts public buses from Certificate-of-Entitlement payments.

The road tax for public buses was also reduced substantially by between $3,500 and $3,900 per bus when ERP was introduced in 1998.

With effect from July 1, 2008, the annual road tax for public buses has been further reduced by 15 per cent.

Mr Geoffrey Lim
Deputy Director
Media Relations
Land Transport Authority


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Something smells in the reply...and its not perfume..