The Yangon Bus Line Public Company has received permission to use the right lane of roads for its buses and will lower its fares, said Dr Maung Aung, chairman of the company’s launch committee.
As part of Yangon’s Express Bus Line Project, 65 new buses will be added to the company’s fleet. Once on the road, they will solely operate on the rightmost lane, which will be designated for express buses. All other buses will have to use the other lanes.
“The current high-standard SRT bus line is currently charging 300 kyats, and if need be, we will lower the fares. We will strive to raise make standards higher than personal vehicles. We are only allowed to operate on the right-side traffic lane at the moment, but if it gets popular enough, we can increase to two lanes in the middle,” said Dr Maung Aung.
The Ministry of Rail Transportation currently permits two bus lines – Evergreen and SRT – to operate in the city. Both lines used electronic bus fare card systems in the past, but only SRT has remained popular enough to keep the payment system intact.
The government will contribute Ks 10 billion to the bus project, and the private sector will put up the remaining Ks 15 billion. Shwethanlwin, Shwetaung Group, Diamond Star, Zeya & Associates and Fishery and Marine Products 2000 Ltd will each hold a share worth Ks 2 billion, and the remaining Ks 5 billion worth of shares will be sold to the public.
“Right now, each group gets around 8 percent, or Ks 2 billion each. Since they invested the money not for profit but to make this whole affair a reality, we are giving them that much. Of course, the shares sold to the public will be motivated by profits. It is hard to say because it is a new system here, and people buy shares because they want profits. So we are working toward allowing both types to enter into the company easily,” said Dr Maung Aung.
“We are currently at the phase of selecting a location for cars and buses to park, as well as getting the government to approve traffic laws to encompass our new express bus services. After we get the licence, we think we will be ready to being operations within five to six months,” said the chairman said.