Netizens flame Khaw Boon Wan for saying “Cheap fares are popular, but they are not sustainable.”

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Transport Minister Khaw Boon Wan drew more flak online after he announced that the current public transport fare formula is “inadequate” and that the Public Transport Council (PTC) is reviewing it to better track “total costs,” in Parliament yesterday.

Khaw opined that local public transport fares are presently affordable and that the Government needs to ensure that the transport network remains sustainable: “We must be careful that (fares) are not priced too cheaply, as maintaining a high-quality transport system requires resources. Cheap fares are popular, but they are not sustainable.”

On the PTC fare review, Khaw said: “I am confident that they can work out a fair and sustainable arrangement. Please support the PTC when they make their recommendations.”

Khaw seemed to indicate that public transport fares will be hiked as he explained how expensive it has been to improve and expand the public transport network:

“Over the past five years, improvements to public transport services have increased operating costs by about 60 per cent. One major contributing factor is the large increase in network capacity as we opened new lines and added more buses and trains.
“This huge cost increase has been borne by the Government. Against such rising cost, fares have gone down by 2 per cent over the same period.”

“Every dollar spent on transport is a dollar less for other expenditure – like schools, healthcare and security,” he added, explaining how the Transport Ministry’s budget has surpassed the budgets for the Ministry of Health, Ministry of National Development and Ministry of Education to become the second-biggest budget after the budget for defense.

Netizens responding to Khaw’s statement mocked that frequent train breakdowns and high ministerial salaries are also not “sustainable”:

Others lamented that fares are already not “cheap” and called on the Minister to show what improvements have been made first:

80 COMMENTS

    • Taxes including GST and fares have to go up because of extremely high salaries paid to useless fools who are incompetent. The whole cabinet included.
      This is the reason why it is not sustainable.
      Singkapor is now sinking like NOL then.

      All these PAP bastards should be better dead than alive.

  1. A proper mass transit system do not need bells and whistles. It simply needs to work. Trains in Japan and Korea are not state of the art pieces. They are utilitarian and functional. Some even date back to the 50s. So how is it they are better systems? Isnt that something that as the minister, Khaw should reflect upon. As i said earlier, providing a public good is never meant to be profitable.

      • What high tech are you talking about? These idiots do not know a thing, so they overpaid to fix the system. Suppliers milk them, now these parasites turn to us to pay for their failures and incompetence.

    • Because Japanese govt and their system are sincerely doing their work for the better good for its people. Singapore version is totally opposite cos they only interested to cut cost and increase fares to earn more profits. And also: Japanese regulators know what is the meaning of ‘shame’

    • The people’s behavior and mentality need a change too. Japanese DO NOT get on social media to complain over a breakdown or cramped trains during peak hours. Singaporeans do.

      Japanese also do not get on social media to claim they know how to run transport systems better than the ministry nor do they disrespect the ministers like Singaporeans do.

      Japanese citizens also would apologize for their mistake publicly no matter how trivial unlike Singaporeans who will find excuses.

    • The difference is easy to see. Japan and Korea are democracies. There is little gerrymandering during election.
      There is no overiding party majority in parliament. There are enough oppositions to check on government.
      Singapore is a fake democracy. The clown prince is the dictator surrounded by thuggish jesters. All failures are hidden. They self praise, self check self, so as to pay themselves obscene salaries. As a result, others grow from strength to strength while we decline from bad to worse.

  2. Brone by government? We paid $1001 every $14300 we spend or $100 every $1430. We spend per month.
    Who paid tax ? It’s our fund. Not government borne,
    Gov seems like 我们是民, 你是主。
    但不民主。
    是主民,而不是民主。

  3. I travelled on a aircon bus in LuoYang, China for 72km n it cost me 2 RMB (40 cents). On return trip, I paid 1 RMB (20 cents) for a non aircon bus. All bus rides irregardless of distance cost 2RMB for aircon n 1 RmMB for non aircon. MRT in Beijing cos 2 RMB for any distance travelled and as long as you stay in the station, there’s no additional cost except the initial 2 RMB paid. The same price goes for all other provinces !! China ranks far behind Singapore in terms of national reserves, yet China government takes care of her people by keeping the cost of transport at minimum

  4. It’s so easy to be a minister. To solve problems. .just increase tax…in this case raise the fare. Who cannot solve this kind of problems. With you draw a salary of $200k a month…you only can come up with this kind of solution. Raise the transport fare…as cheap fare is not sustainable. Who cannot solve it this way. We expect you..to think out of the box…use your brain. .where to get money in order to sustain the train services. We have road tax…ERP payment…COE payment. ..other vehicles tax..where are these money. Only you. .as minister of transport knows…so we expect you to come up with something better rather than this primary school children’s solution. Hopeless Cow.

  5. With the massive influx of foreign workers and regional tourist job seekers, the riderships should increase by more than five folds, the PAP is already reaping massive profits without much corresponding increase in transport infrastructure spending. Why is there a need to constantly increase the fares?
    The useless PAP operated system is simply not efficient and not cost effective. Just look at the high salaries for zero knowledge management team and high number of breakdowns and faults that require to pay for external help.
    Tax money is wasted to support greedy PAP cronies with crutch mentality.

  6. Ministers high salaries are popular too but not sustainable is the exact quote we should be tell this $8/- Man. Cut their salaries corresponding with the raise of the GST and I bet as the sun will rise tomorrow no Minister will resign. Because if they did there is no way in hell can they earn that kind of amount in the private sector as the majority of them are not worth their salt. Seriously talking BS.

  7. If I have salary of 2 millions of course it is cheap. But if you have salary of few humdred it is NOT CHEAP!!!
    Please put some sense into it, everything already very expensive and everyday talking about raising something. What are these people for? Milking the ordinary citizen?

    • Mass transit in China and Korea are much cheaper. Train fares in many countries in America and Africa also cheaper than Singapore. All our neighbors in Asean have relative cheaper train fares. Cars in rest of the world much much cheaper than Singapore. PAP loves to do selective comparison in their favour, dafts should learn not to parrot their lines.

  8. Before my 95 year old uncle died he said that he had one wish. He hoped that PAP will all die painful deaths for the sufferings they have inflicted on Singaporeans.
    Well he passed away at almost 96 last month.

  9. Current MRT fares already much higher than before, so don’t anyhow claim the fares as cheap and popular.
    We like the old bus routes decades ago better but these have been rerouted by those greedy government related companies to make more profit for MRT.