PM quashes flat-fare plan
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has quashed the proposal to introduce a 15-baht flat-rate fare on state-run electric train routes, saying it will force the state to fork out money to make up for lost revenues.
Gen Prayut made the remark after Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob proposed to implement a single fare along two state-run electric rail routes -- namely the Tao Poon-Bang Yai section of the MRT Purple Line, and the Airport Rail Link (ARL) between Phaya Thai and Suvarnabhumi airport.
When Mr Saksayam announced his pledge, no mention of subsidies were made. He also said that he expects to have a more detailed picture of the proposal's viability by the end of this year.
Gen Prayut asked the new transport minister to "think twice".
"No one can make such a decision unilaterally. The issue must be discussed and considered by all involved," Gen Prayut said.
"If the flat-rate proposal is implemented, where will the government find the money needed to offset the losses?" he said. "Bangkok commuters must be patient on the matter."