LTFRB eyes lower fares once diesel touches P45/liter

By Alvin Elchico, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 11 2012 06:25 PM | Updated as of May 13 2012 01:41 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The Land Transportation Franchising & Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said it will have to bring down the minimum fare for public utility jeepneys once diesel prices go down to P45 per liter.

LTFRB chairman James Jacob cited the ruling on the provisional increase of P0.50 granted to PUJ operators which clearly states that if diesel falls to P45/liter, the minimum fare will revert back to P8.

However, Jacob said the board will wait for diesel prices to hover between P43 to P44 in order to establish a downward trend, before ordering a reduction in fares.

He explained fuel prices change every week so it is possible that after a big price rollback next week, prices will go up again.

Once diesel prices hover between P43 to P44, it would be safe to assume that prices have already become stable.

Transport group Pasang Masda said they are willing to bring down fares to P8, citing the ruling in the provisional increase order obtained from the LTFRB last March.

But Pasang Masda president Obet Martin said the board must also be quick to increase the minimum fare if diesel prices go up again in the future.

LTFRB's Jacob said there will be no hearings if the fares are reduced, but a hearing is needed for a petition to increase fares.