BANGKOK, 16 March 2012 – Operators of local-style passenger pick-up vehicles are calling for a fare hike in light of the rising diesel price.
Chatchai Poo-ari, president of the passenger pick-up vehicles or songthaews’ club of Bangkok, said the operators can no longer bear the high cost of diesel, which has been raised to 32.33 baht a litre. He said his company is losing at least 38,000 baht daily as the government has not yet allowed the operators to raise fares.
According to him, the club agreed that the fare for songthaews should be raised from 5.50 baht currently to 8 baht to correspond to higher fuel cost.
The club has submitted the proposal for a fare increase to the Central Land Transport Committee but has not yet received any response so far. He is hoping the matter will be put on the cabinet agenda during their meeting in Phuket.
According to Mr. Chatchai, if no urgent measure is taken by the Transport Ministry, the club will spearhead a protest in front of the Ministry next week with participation of more than 2,000 songthaews usually plying the streets in Bangkok and nearby provinces.
(NNT : Narumon Ngamsaithong)