Pakistan Railways (PR) is set to increase fares of freight trains by 20 percent following an increase in fuel prices.
PR is facing a financial burden of Rs. 3 billion due to the recent increase in oil prices, a senior official of the Railways Ministry revealed.
Official sources say that a 20 percent increase in freight train fares would be applicable after August 10, 2019. PR’s operating cost for 2019-20 is estimated at Rs 22.83 billion compared to Rs 20.985 billion for 2018-19.
The rail transport authority has increased passenger train fares by up to 17 percent over the past year. According to a PR spokesman, the increase in fares is rational and was done after careful study of road and air transport fares.
The increase in fares would reduce the financial burden faced by Pakistan Railways, he added.
Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed had announced earlier that fares of economy class trains would be increased by up to Rs 100, while a six to seven percent increase would be made for other classes from July 1 in the wake of the recent oil price hike.
He said that rail fares would have to be revised as PR has to face an additional burden of Rs. 3 billion, adding that the fares would remain unchanged for routes shorter than 50km.
Note that, Pakistan Railways increased the fare for Green Line Express – the only VIP train running between Islamabad and Karachi – in April.