Making transportation more affordable

MP for Punggol East SMC, Lee Li Lian has called for the fare concessions to be extended to the disabled as what the other MPs has raised in the past.

She hopes that the concession to be given to the disabled would be significant to ease the financial burden on this group of individuals who are likely to be low income earners due to their disabilities.

She also hope that the Fare Review Mechanism Committee would consider giving the same travel concessions not just to those who have physical disabilities, but to those with special needs, such as Down Syndrome.

Ms Lee raised the point that while taxis are still viewed as private transport but they fall mid-way between vehicle ownership and a mode of public transport.

She stated that by having the free market of the taxi industry which is currently led by one major player, ComfortDelgro and several much smaller companies, leaves the smaller players with less room to set competitive fares or rentals.

Referring to a report from Asiaone.com, the National Taxi Association had urged the taxi companies to follow ComfortDelgro’s upward revisions to surcharge and fares in 2011 which the Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) raised concerns, asking ComfortDelGro to justify its taxi fare revision.

She says that this incident points to a need to re-look at how the taxi industry is regulated, to strike a better balance in terms of benefits for both commuters and drivers.

She urged the Ministry of Transportation to call for a review of taxi service provision, taking into deeper consideration of the pricing and tangible benefits towards the real income of taxi drivers.

Read MP Lee Li Lian’s speech here