MANILA -- Malacanang cited the need to increase fare in Light Rail Transit (LRT) and Metro Rail Transit (MRT) to recover losses from the rail transit’s operation.

Presidential spokesperson Edwin Lacierda admitted that the operation of LRT and MRT are incurring losses due to income lower than its operating expenses.

“Naging usap-usapan po yung fare price ng MRT is much lower than bus fare. Palugi po ang operation ng MRT and LRT, ito po ay bagay na pinag-aaralan,” he said.

He said he will leave the discretion on fare adjustment to the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the Department of Finance (DOF).

Earlier, DOTC Secretary Jose de Jesus announced plan to increase rail transit fees to augment income with a billion peso per year.

De Jesus said the railways only earns about P1.8 billion a year while its operations and maintenance cost more than P5 billion. (Jill Beltran/Sunnex)