No change in transport fare despite fuel price hike

Kathmandu, January 18

Department of Transport Management (DoTM) — the government body responsible for regulating the country’s transportation sector — today informed that public transportation fare will not go up despite surging price of petroleum products.

Though public transportation fares were reviewed earlier based on change in fuel price, DoTM officials have said that the public transportation fare will be reviewed on the basis of change in price of other components like lubricants, tyres and vehicle spare parts, among others.

“DoTM will not review public transportation fare solely on the basis of recent surge in fuel price. However, the fare will be reviewed if there is significant change in the price of other components too,” said Rupnarayan Bhattarai, director general of DoTM.

DoTM is mandated to review public transportation fare based on the Scientific Fare Determination Mechanism of the government.

The mechanism states that public transportation fare be revised along with the change in price of components like fuel, lubricants, tyre and vehicle spare parts, among others, by five per cent in aggregate.

The mechanism has given 35 per cent weightage to fuel price and 65 per cent weightage to the price of other components while reviewing public transportation fare.

DoTM had last reviewed public transportation fare on February 7, 2016. Back then, it had hiked public transportation fare by 2.53 per cent. At that time, petrol and diesel used to cost Rs 99 per litre and Rs 75 per litre, respectively.

Their prices have gone up since then and petrol and diesel cost Rs 103 per litre and Rs 81 per litre, respectively, at present.

Meanwhile, DoTM has been studying the inflation rate of every component after pressure from transport entrepreneurs to raise transportation fare.

As per Bhattarai, a separate committee at DoTM has been reviewing the inflation rate in all the components since the last adjustment in public transportation fare.

“However, a preliminary study shows that there has not been any significant change to the price of other components that have 65 per cent weightage in fare adjusting process,” informed Bhattarai.

On the other hand, transporters have been constantly pressurising the government to increase public transportation fare citing reasons like increased fuel price and improper road conditions across the country.