The Cabinet has approved an increase in bus fares by 6.56% with effect from today.
However, there will be no change in the current minimum fare, Minister Ranjith Madduma Bandara said.
He revealed this while speaking to reporters after the Cabinet meeting at the Presidential Secretariat in Colombo.
At the weekly Cabinet meeting, chaired by President Maithripala Sirisena with the participation of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and all ministers, several topics, including the fuel price increase, were discussed extensively. The Government increased fuel prices on 10 May with Auto Diesel and Super Diesel reaching Rs. 109 and Rs. 119 per litre respectively. The Cabinet paper regarding bus fare revisions was presented to the Cabinet.
The country’s bus trade unions have asked the Government to increase the bus fares and accordingly, an expert committee met on Monday to discuss the matter. Transport and Civil Aviation Deputy Minister Ashok Abeysinghe had said that recommendations were made regarding the bus fare revisions.
The committee had decided to formulate a Cabinet paper and present it to the Cabinet. According to the Deputy Minister, a bus fare revision will be implemented after gaining the approval for the said Cabinet paper.
Lanka Private Bus Owners’ Association Chairman Gemunu Wijeratne had said that they would decide the course of action based on the decision made by the Government on the bus fares. They had called for a fare increase of 10%.
The Inter-Provincial Private Bus Association had requested the Government to increase bus fares by 20%.