Almost 10 lei for a minibus trip? What do municipal councilors say

The municipal councilors consider the rise in fares requested by minibus operators in Chisinau is exaggerated and unjustified. Moreover, they said they received no relevant application from carriers so far.

The maxi-taxi operators demand that the minibus fare should be raised to 9.81 lei.

Contacted by IPN, Vasile Grădinaru, who heads the group of the Action and Solidarity Party on the Chisinau Municipal Council (CMC), said that as long as he saw neither the first application filed by minibus operators in the middle of January, nor the second one submitted a week ago, he does not know what these ask for. “The carriers do not cover now their costs not only because the fuel prices rose. They do not have enough passengers. The essence of the problem is that the public transport system in the municipality of Chisinau is outdated. If they had had clients permanently, they would have covered their costs even with the current fare of 3 lei,” stated Vasile Grădinaru.

The councilor said the public transport scheme is the first thing that should be discussed and they are now working on a new concept so as to change this scheme. Also, the operators should create better conditions for passengers. The fare of 10 lei for a trip by minibus is exaggerated for Chisinau.

Socialist councilor Nicolae Pascaru said that he will not support an eventual initiative to raise minibus fares. The authorities should focus on trolleybuses and make them cleaner and more comfortable so that the travellers choose trolleybuses. In the future, the maxi-taxis should run only outside Chisinau or at least outside the central streets. The fare of 10 lei is surely exaggerated and the current fare cannot be raised even if the operators ensure excellent conditions for travellers.

Deputy head of the group of the Party “Dignity and Truth Platform” Aliona Mandatii has told IPN that if such a proposal is put to the vote in the CMC, they will not accept a fare of 10 lei. “This is an unjustified and high fare for the citizens of the municipality,” she stated, noting they should address the issue on the whole and consider raising the fares for other public units of transport as well. If the carriers justify the fare of 10 lei, the Chisinau City Hall should submit solutions to the Government so that the transport allowances for socially deprived persons and persons with disabilities are increased.

Ion Cebanu, who heads the group of the Liberal Party on the CMC, said that he didn’t see the demands of the carriers. If such a draft decision is put to the vote, the Liberal councilors will not back it as the asked fare is too high and the operators do not fully respect the transportation conditions. He would like to see the arguments that would justify the requested rise.

A week ago, the maxi-taxi operators working in Chisinau made a new approach to the municipal authorities, asking to raise the minibus fare. The carriers undertake to improve the working conditions if the fare is increased. The application was addressed to the CMC, the City Hall and the General Public Transport and Communications Division. The previous request to raise the fare was made on January 13.

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