Junta de Andalucia demands compensation for bus companies

Buses left empty on some routes due to free train travel Credit: Junta de Andalucia

THE Junta de Andalucia demands compensation for bus companies as Renfe required to offer free rail travel.

The Minister of Development, Articulation of the Territory and Housing, Marifrán Carazo, has demanded that the Government of Spain create a fund that compensates for the situation of imbalance generated by the free Renfe trips to the rest of the transport sector.

She has sent a formal letter to the Minister of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda, Raquel Sánchez, in which she has conveyed her concern about the impact of this measure on road passenger transport services, which “suffer from the increase in cost of fuel and have not yet recovered from the Covid-19 pandemic”, which led to a drastic drop in the number of travellers.

The Minister has requested that the State compensate the companies operating the bus lines that provide routes coinciding with the railway “due to the serious economic damages derived from the free of charge of the Cercanías and Media Distancia rail services”.

The minister supports the demands of the Andalucian Business Federation of Bus Transport (Fandabus) and she agrees that the measure adopted by the Government “gives priority to one mode of transport over another” and can lead to “consequences to group of operating companies, many of them SMEs, which will see their incomes significantly decrease with the obvious danger of losing activity and jobs”.

She added in her letter that the measure may also have an impact on the quality of services “due to the impossibility for Renfe to meet the demand that it is going to register and for the road transport operators that coincide with the railway to maintain the current offer of services.”

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