Photo of PTC Richard Magus from Straits Times

Chairman of Public Transport Council (PTC), Richard Magnus, confirmed in his blog yesterday (Oct 19) that fares will be raised in the coming annual review, saying that Singaporeans should pay higher transport fares for the construction of new train lines like the Downtown Line:

“The DTL is the latest addition to the Government’s stable of investments in new rail infrastructure, on which it will spend $20 billion over the next 5 years. This comes on top of $4 billion to renew, upgrade and expand rail operating assets, and another $4 billion in bus contracting subsidies over the same period. While these investments are a necessary part of the Government’s push to improve the public transport experience, they raise operating costs and impose a heavy cost burden on taxpayers. The Council therefore cannot turn a blind eye to this trend of rising costs but will have to ensure that the viability of the public transport system is sustained.”

The ruling party government crony quoted a fake study by government-owned Singapore Management University (SMU) claiming that Singaporeans are saying fares are too cheap:

“A study by the Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS) of our fares with 35 cities supports the relative affordability of our fares. After adjusting for the relative strength of currencies and costs of living, Singapore’s rail fares are among the lowest in Asia, and considerably lower than those in Australian, European and North American cities. This was corroborated by feedback from our focus group discussions with commuters who told us that our fares are affordable. These are extracts of their views (no names are provided for privacy reasons):

“Actually, I think it is still affordable because I stay at the end of Singapore which is at Punggol. I get to town I only pay about $1.57 per trip. Every month I top up about $150 so roughly at end of the month I have about $10-20 left…. So, affordability-wise, I think for myself still affordable.” (Working adult)

“The fares are quite ok for me. I am quite comfortable with it.” (Senior)”

SMU is one of Singapore’s key fake news generators aside from Singapore Press Holdings and Channel News Asia, the government university often come up with fake surveys to push government agendas.