Tag Archives: Malaysian Government

Crowdsourcing for Budget 2014

The Malaysian Government is crowdsourcing ideas for the 2014 budget at http://www.1malaysia.com.my/bajet2014.

Here is our feedback:

In  order to support the use of public transport,  there should be a reward for those who are everyday users of public transport because they are not clogging the roads & polluting the air.

Transit Malaysia proposes that the government offer income tax credits of minimum RM300 to those who purchase 12 monthly public transport passes in one tax year. Lesser credits would be made available to those who purchase fewer than 12 passes.

TRANSIT has also made the following comment and proposal:

Public transport in Malaysia is unreliable, infrequent and plagued by inefficient competition. The government plans to put “RAPID” bus services in every major capital city. However, these companies would not be local or locally accountable and would instead answer to decisions made by Prasarana in KL.

TRANSIT Malaysia proposes that the government create local/regional public transport organizing authorities to manage and organize public transport services in the Klang Valley and other economic regions.

There is obviously more to be said, especially on the failure of our existing poorly-regulated, non-accountable and ineffective public transport system,but we only had 500 characters available in which to post.

TRANSIT asks for your support in promoting comments that support efficient, wise investments that will improve public transport operations throughout Malaysia.

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Briton charged RM450 for 10km trip, sparking furore over cheating cabbies (Update #1)

Update: The Minister of Tourism wants to make taxi drivers into tourism ambassadors with “basic communication skills”.

TRANSIT could not let this article pass by without posting it and commenting.

The Minister of Tourism wants to make taxi drivers into tourism ambassadors with “basic communication skills”Unfortunately, we are terribly busy with yesterday’s planned post on the recent interview with SPAD about bus transformation – so once again, we will just post the article and try to get our comments updated as soon as possible.

Briton charged RM450 for 10km trip, sparking furore over cheating cabbies (The Star)

Wednesday February 29, 2012
By P. ARUNA
aruna@thestar.com.my

PETALING JAYA: An English tourist was charged RM450 for a taxi ride from KL Sentral to the Suria KLCC shopping centre, a distance of less than 10km.

The Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) said the tourist paid the fare before lodging a report against the driver.

SPAD chairman Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar said they were investigating and would take action against the taxi driver and the operator.

He said the taxi driver was believed to have threatened the tourist into paying the fee. Continue reading Briton charged RM450 for 10km trip, sparking furore over cheating cabbies (Update #1)

Bus system improvements to include a little bit of London and a little bit of Kelantan?

TRANSIT took note of this very interesting interview in the NST with SPAD CEO Mohd Nur Kamal, discussing the bus transformation plan and proposals for implementation of improved bus services.

It is interesting to note that SPAD is learning from London and will be applying their knowledge in Kelantan.

Bus system to go London style? (NST)

26 February 2012

Mohd Nur Kamal, chief executive of the Land Public Transport Commission which just turned 1 in January, tells Tan Choe Choe that his agency is looking at several options but more time is needed to come up with the best solution to the national bus crisis.

SPAD CEO Mohd Nur Kamal. Image courtesy of NST.

Continue reading Bus system improvements to include a little bit of London and a little bit of Kelantan?

What is RapidBRT, how will it work, and when is it coming to the Klang Valley?

TRANSIT took note of this interesting photo of a sign in one of our LRT trains – advertising improvements to RapidKL bus services.

To the top of the photo, we see an advertisement for RapidBET Route #3, which connects Subang Mewah to Pasar Seni, Kuala Lumpur. And down in the right hand corner, the message “RapidBRT Akan Datang! Coming Soon!”

RapidBRT & RapidBET advertisement. Image courtesy of @TWK90

But what exactly is RapidBRT?

Well, we know that BRT stands for Bus Rapid Transit – a “rapid transit” system of public transport using buses as the vehicle technology. In TRANSIT’s view the term “rapid transit” can encompass any type of public transport operating in a Category “A” or Category “B” right-of-way.
Continue reading What is RapidBRT, how will it work, and when is it coming to the Klang Valley?

No bus for you Kelantan! Well, 11 fewer buses than before!

TRANSIT took note of more news of more CityLiner bus services shutting down.

This time, 11 bus routes in Kelantan have stopped operating, as discussions between CityLiner and the state government which began in November 2011 were not able to reach a solution – despite the state government’s offer of RM400,000 over 4 months.

Cityliner to cut 11 routes in Kelantan (NST)

14 January 2012

KOTA BARU: Thousands of commuters will be affected when Cityliner stops its stage bus service in 11 of the 17 routes it operates in the state beginning today.

A spokesman for the company said it was taking the action after a series of discussions with the state government failed to find a solution to help the company. Continue reading No bus for you Kelantan! Well, 11 fewer buses than before!

‘Solutions’ to public transport problems focusing on the bus industry, not public transport users

By now everyone should be aware that a major crisis is taking place in the bus industry.

The shut down of CityLiner bus services throughout was the major ‘tipping pint’ in a series of crises [TRANSIT: refer to our “No Bus for You” series of posts] that showed the precarious state of public transport and the bus industry – and made it clear that SPAD has lost the plot by focusing on the MRT project rather than revamping & transforming public transport.

The nation-wide collapse of bus services are continuing, despite the recent announcement that the Malaysian Government has approved an RM400mn fund for public transport operators. Applications for this fund began earlier this week and SPAD intends to release the first Rm100mn as soon as possible.

TRANSIT notes that the government is stepping in with the financial aid to bus operators. We also note that Prasarana-RapidKL have talked about improving cooperation (actually, we should say “starting” cooperation) with private bus operators to reduce wasteful competition on different routes. At the same time, taxi drivers and other bus companies are benefiting from the lack of competition in the Klang area since CityLiner shut down bus services, affecting thousands of public transport users.

However, we need the government, SPAD and Prasarana-RapidKL to acknowledge that their “solutions” are not holistic and not sustainable. The problem is that they are focusing on short-term solutions for the crisis, not long-term solutions that will make public transport work, sustainably and effectively, and most importantly, meet the needs of public transport users.

And this, ladies & gentlemen, is the biggest problem. Everyone talks about fixing public transport but all the solutions that are put forward focus on the bus industry, rather than the public transport service. What’s worse is that the ‘solutions’ still fail to consider the needs of the public transport users.

Read about TRANSIT’s take on the issues and a proposed action plan after the jump! Continue reading ‘Solutions’ to public transport problems focusing on the bus industry, not public transport users

TRANSIT says goodbye to 2011 and wishes everyone a happy 2012

The year 2011 has been quite tumultuous for public transport and indeed, for many people in many places throughout the world.

Specifically to public transport, we in Malaysia have seen a number of major changes. Continue reading TRANSIT says goodbye to 2011 and wishes everyone a happy 2012

No bus for you reaches Selangor … again! (Update #4)

TRANSIT took note of more bad news in the public transport industry – another shutdown of bus services in Selangor.

Yes, you may not realize it but the “No Bus For You!” crisis that is affecting our public transport industry has already reached Selangor … and Perak, Negri Sembilan, Kedah, and Pahang. So this would not be the first time!

Earlier this year, Sabak Bernam and Kuala Selangor lost their bus service but no one really noticed … except perhaps the people at TRANSIT and some in the media (and they moved on pretty quickly, as they are apt to do).

But now, the most recent crisis that has been popping up all over the country, caused by CityLiner’s threats to shut down bus services in various states, is suddenly getting the attention of the public.

Cityliner wants govt ‘lifeline’ (The Star)
Tuesday December 13, 2011
By WANI MUTHIAH and JOSEPH KAOS Jr
newsdesk@thestar.com

[TRANSIT: Please help us out by sending comments to the Star using their email address, editor@thestar.com.my or metro@thestar.com.my. You can also consider sending messages through their facebook & twitter feeds. The message has to get out that the public is frustrated!]
Continue reading No bus for you reaches Selangor … again! (Update #4)

Prasarana proposes cooperation and “code share” system for Klang Valley bus operators (Update #1)

Update: The response from bus operators & government is mixed!

Yesterday TRANSIT learned of a proposal from Prasarana, the government-owned “National Infrastructure Company” to introduce a cooperative system between bus operators, where bus operators would share information, operate routes together under “code sharing” agreements, and implement “blue ocean strategy” to rationalize their operations.

We were immediately surprised and intrigued by the possibilities … and wary of the risks.

The public transport industry in Malaysia is in crisis. Part of the reason for this is because there is no holistic understanding within the government and among the public of what public transport is (a public utility), what it does (stimulates and ensures productivity and economic growth), and what it provides (mobility and access).

Malaysia has no National Public Transport Strategy or any form of cohesive public transport strategy except for “build infrastructure” and “subsidize or buy out when necessary.” And we should mention that to many Malaysians both of those “strategies” have the unfortunate subtext of “enrich cronies.”

What makes things worse is that there is no clear interest in improving public transport services or approaching (and appreciating) public transport as a public utility with economic & social benefits. The public does not seem to be aware and the state & local governments did not seem to care.

Until the crisis started, that is.

Now state governments are being forced to take notice and ensure that there are solutions to the problems in the industry. Unfortunately, they do not have the knowledge, experience or the tools to ensure these solutions will work.

SPAD has asked state governments to do whatever they can to resolve the problems in the short term. The Governments of Penang and Negri Sembilan have stepped in with subsidies. Prasarana’s proposal for cooperation might represent an alternative way of doing things – but the big question is, Will private operators want to work with a government-owned asset-owner-cum-operator that receives capital & operational subsidy from the federal government and appears to be actively competing with private operators on any number of routes?

And more importantly, will corporate collaboration work effectively and meet the needs of the public transport users?

More information, articles & comments after the jump!
Continue reading Prasarana proposes cooperation and “code share” system for Klang Valley bus operators (Update #1)

CityLiner to receive operations subsidy from Penang Government

TRANSIT took note of this article which states that the Penang Government will provide an operational subsidy of RM140,000 per month to bus operator CityLiner to continue operating bus services in Sebarang Prai until May 2012.

This came after the bus companies operating under the CityLiner brand threatened to stop bus operations in Sebarang Prai as of November 21st, because the operations had become unsustainable due to low revenues and higher costs. This came as part of a shutdown in multiple states that has provided major inconvenience for public transport users throughout Peninsular Malaysia.

CityLiner is the stage bus brand of Konsortium Transnasional Berhad (KTB), which is Malaysia’s largest bus operator.

Cityliner gets subsidy to keep it going (The Star)
Saturday December 10, 2011

BUTTERWORTH: Cityliner buses will continue to provide services on the Penang mainland at least until May next year.

The Penang Government will provide a RM140,000 subsidy per month to Konsortium Transnasional Berhad (KTB) for six months to help the company maintain the Cityliner service.

State Traffic Management Committee chairman Chow Kon Yeow said the state had accepted the subsidy proposal by KTB as a short-term remedy for the company to continue providing the bus service. Continue reading CityLiner to receive operations subsidy from Penang Government