Business News of 2013-12-03

Transport fares remain unchanged despite increase in price of fuel

Public transport fares will not be increased, despite a three-per cent upward adjustment in fuel prices by the government, the Greater Accra Chairman of the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU), Mr Robert Sarbah, has said.

The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) revised upwards the prices of petroleum products with effect from Sunday, December 1, 2013, but Mr Sarbah told the Daily Graphic that the recent increment did not allow the union to increase transportation fares due to a convention that transport associations had signed with the government.

According to him, the convention allowed the unions to increase transport fares only when there was a fuel increase of five per cent or more.

He, however, explained that if there was another fuel increase which added up to the five per cent with the present imcrease, then the union would be compelled to increase public transportation fares.

The GPRTU and the Progressive Transport Owners Association (PROTOA) are the two major road transport unions in the country. The two operate under the Ghana Road Transport Coordinating Council.

An increase in the prices of fuel triggered an upward review of public transport fares in September this year.

No increase in fares

This time round, the situation is different, as commercial drivers say they have not been instructed by their leaders to increase fares.

Mr Micheal Koomson, a ‘trotro’ driver plying between the Tema Station and Kasoa and belonging to the GPTRU, indicated that he and his colleagues at the station had not been asked by their leaders to increase the fare.

He said they only complied with instructions from the leaders.

He stated that the decision by the leaders for them not to increase the fare posed no financial burden on them, as the fuel increase was minimal.

Mr Kassim of Tema-Station to Odorkor shared a similar view, stating that “once we have not had any directive from our leaders, we will not increase the fare”.

The NPA also increased the price of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) by 11 per cent and that of kerosene by 10.99 per cent.

Gas oil, which sold at 222GP a litre, will now be 226Gp per litre.

Premix fuel, however, saw no change in price. It will still sell at 116Gp per litre.