Updates: 07.04.2021 15:13
Released: 07.04.2021, 15:13
Prague – The coronavirus crisis last year deprived domestic regions, together with Prague, of 3.7 billion crowns in fare revenues in public transport. Representatives of the regions therefore negotiate with the state on possible compensation, without them there is a risk of rising prices and restrictions on traffic. This was told to journalists by the Deputy Chairman of the Council of the Association of Regions of the Czech Republic and the Governor of the Liberec Region Martin Půta (Mayors for the Liberec Region). Some regions have already started raising prices. This year, the losses exceed another billion crowns.
Regions order bus and train connections from carriers. Nationwide last year, a pandemic drove tens of millions of people off buses and trains. According to statistics from the Ministry of Transport, about a third of passengers lost their connections.
Půta stated that the association is currently negotiating compensation with the Minister of Industry, Trade and Transport, Karel Havlíček (for YES). “Last year, the state did not provide any compensation for regional train and bus transport; negotiations this year are a bit more promising,” said Půta.
Without compensation according to the regions, there is a risk of higher fare, some regions have already started to do so. Last week, for example, the Central Bohemian Region decided to increase the price of public transport fares by an average of a quarter since July. In the summer, the Liberec Region will also increase prices. According to Půta, without the help of the state, there is also a risk of further reduction of traffic. According to him, this would mainly affect the peripheral parts of the regions, which are not so much used, but could be a big problem for the remaining passengers.
The state and the carriers themselves have long been asking for compensation for fare losses. According to the latest plans, they should distribute up to 1.5 billion crowns from the state. However, the aid must be approved by the European Commission.