Photo of Khaw Boon Wan on train

Public train fares may increase this year end after SBS and SMRT submit their applications for a fare adjustment this Oct 7. According to regulator Public Transport Council, the 2016 Fare Review Exercise will still use the same formula that saw SBS and SMRT raking tens of millions of profits each year since 2013. The result will be announced by the end of 2016.

SMRT posted S$91 million profit in 2015 while SBS reported a S$19.6 million profit. Despite increasing train breakdowns and poorer reliability, the Singapore government refused to claw back the profits and return Singapore commuters for not getting what they paid for. The upcoming train fare adjustment will likely again boost the profits of SMRT and SBS Transit.

Bus fares will not be increased after the Singapore government paid S$7.1 billion of taxpayers’ money to nationalise the public bus system in August.

Singapore’s public train system has been hit by a series of scandals and embarrassing performance which saw the resignation of a Transport Minister and the CEO of the Land Transport Authority. In August, the Singapore government was exposed by an independent Hongkong-based media for covering up the multi-million return of 26 new trains to China that were found to have cracklines requiring repair work possible only in China.

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