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539 YBS buses charged for collecting higher bus fares

Action has been taken against a total of 539 YBS buses for charging higher bus fares, according to the Yangon Region Transport Committee (YRTC).

YRTC officials conducted surprise checks and took action against 539 buses of 15 YBS lines such as CNG permit suspension for three months, six months and one year suspension against the buses that collect over K500 bus fares and deploy conductors.

YRTC is carrying out surprise road checks for bus lines not to violate rules and regulations including charging higher fares. Currently, there are about 50,000 YBS passengers who use the YPS card system. Officials are also taking trial measures for billing bus fares depending on bus stops. A total of 3,250 buses of 116 bus lines provide services for 1.3 million passengers daily in Yangon.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Highway van service providers tolerating fuel price spike

The price of diesel hit a record high of K3,000 per litre of diesel in the retail market on 24 August 2022, U Aung Zaw, a truck owner, told the Global New Light of Myanmar (GNLM). On 24 August, fuel prices were K2,440 per litre of Octane 92 and K2,525 per litre of Octane 95. There was a price gap of K355 per litre between Octane 92 and Diesel on 7 August. Then, the gap widened to K560 per litre on 24 August. On 22 August, Octane 92 was priced at K2,400 while diesel was worth K2,820 per litre. The figures indicated a rise of K40 for Octane 92 and K180 for diesel against the rates recorded on 24 August.

The prices of diesel tremendously rose from K8,944 per gallon on 7 August to K13,620 per gallon on 24 August. The ferry service for the 200-mile-long Yangon-Mawgyun trip hiked the price up to K6,000 per passenger. Furthermore, the frequency of ferry service dropped this month as only one ferry is running. When two ferries ran last year, the passenger was charged only K2,000, the GNLM quoted Ma Khin Khin Aye, a passenger from Mawgyun, as saying. The freight charge for the Yangon-Pyapon ferry trip increased from K200 to K300 per rice bag, U Ohn, an operator of a double-decker elaborated.

Similarly, 48-mile-long Yangon-Kyaiklat ferries also raised the ferry ticket price from K3,000 to K4,000 last month. Freight costs also doubled from K500 to K1,000 per basket of goods such as eggs, coconut and banana, Daw Aye Than, a seller of eggs, coconut and banana from Kyaiklat told the GNLM. On 23 August 2022, fuel retail prices per litre in Yangon stood at K2,390 for Octane 92, K2,480 for Octane 95 and K2,865 for diesel. On 24 August, Octane 92 price was up by K50, while the diesel price showed a big jump by K135. In spite of the fuel price rises, the prices of highway van services that use Octane remain unchanged. Highway van operators reported that a passenger is charged K10,000 for a Yangon-Mawgyun trip and the price stays the same. Nonetheless, transport costs of diesel-fuelled trucks and ferries are higher due to the price hike of diesel, highway truck operators and ferry commuters said. 

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Billing system of collecting bus fare of YBS depending on stops on five-day test

Bus fare collection on YBS payment cards will depend on number of bus-stops for five days, and initially, YBS 28 and YBS 29 lines will start working as a pilot test from 13 August, according to the YBS authorities.
The bus fare will be based on the number of stops by specifying the beginning of the gate, the middle of the gate, and the end of the gate. It will be started as a pilot test from 12 to 18 August and if it is convenient, it is planned to be implemented from 19 August.

Any stop will be charged 200 kyats according to the current fare format on the YBS-28 (Dagon University to Sule City Hall) bus line, starting from the starting stop and up to a total of 25 stops. A total of 300 Kyats will be deducted from the card if the journey exceeds 24 stops from the start of the bus stop. Similarly, any stop on the YBS-29 (Shwe Paukan Bridge to Sule City Hall) bus line will be charged 200 kyats from the starting stop up to a total of 33 stops. A trip that exceeds a total of 32 stops from the bus stop will cost 300 kyats. From 12 to 18 August, the Dilet Test system will be tested for five days only, and if it is effective, YPS card users will be able to make accurate fare payments using the YPS card based on the number of stops from 19 August.

It is reported that the previously fixed fare (Flat Fare) will now be changed to a fare (Distance Fare) which will be charged based on the distance traveled. YUPT Company announced in early August that if passengers will pay the fare with the YPS card, they will have to pay the fare with the card once to get on the bus and once to get off. As for the fare collection, it will cost 200 kyats if the trip is half way from the gate. It is planned to charge 200 kyats from any trip to the end of the gate and 400 kyats for the whole trip. If passengers pay for the start-to-end of the trip with the YPS card, the fare will be reduced by 5% discount and will cost only 380 kyats. A total of 116 YBS bus lines are transporting about 121,230 passengers with 3,172 buses in all townships in Yangon.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Delivery services of highway bus lines around Aung San stadium suspended

The authorities no longer permit cargo services of highway bus lines at Aung San Stadium in Mingala Taungnyunt Township, according to the bus line and cargo transport counters. “The municipal informed that we cannot load, unload and conduct cargo transport services starting 4 August. I think the operation is suspended due to the instructions of the SAC Chairman to launch heavy maintenance on the stadium. We don’t know the reason exactly. We can sell bus tickets.

Not only the counters but also the stalls may be removed,” said an official of the highway bus line. Counters at the Aung San Stadium are branches of the Aung Mingala Highway Bus Terminal and various bus lines are concentrated there. The ban on loading and unloading processes causes difficulties to the business people, he added. “We have to go to the Aung Mingala terminal if we want to send the packages to other regions. There are not many bus lines at U Chit Maung station and we have to pay K1,000 per package a short trip. Counters at Aung San stadium accepts packages of products for those who don’t want to go far and it is convenient for the people.

Now, the delivery services and business people face hardships,” said Ko Wunna Tun, an online seller. The express buses are not allowed to carry 19 types of materials including drones, binoculars, iron materials, wire, solar and power bank. The officials conduct thorough checks at the inspection camps along the road, according to express bus lines. The transport services of express bus counters around the Aung San Stadium play a key role for entrepreneurs from other sides of Yangon, Thakayta, Dawbon, Ahlon, Pazundaung, Lanmadaw, Latha, Pabedan, Kyimyindine township and online entrepreneurs. The counters around the Aung San Stadium have been opening for many years and such closures can lead to many difficulties. 

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Announcement of the resumption of Tourist
Visa service on Online e-Visa System

  1. The Ministry of Immigration and Population resumed the Online e-Visa services on 1 April 2022 for business visa applications to facilitate the entry of foreign investors and businessmen to Myanmar. Moreover, commercial international flights operations are allowed to operate in accordance with the COVID-19 rules and regulations of the Ministry of Health, and therefore, the number of foreign visitors to Myanmar has been increasing.
  2. With an aim to develop tourism sector and to have a harmonized tourism with the neighbouring countries, e-Visa (Tourist) applications will be allowed and accepted from 20 May 2022.
  3. Requirements for the application of Online e-Visa (Tourist) will be available at the Ministry’s website https://evisa.moip.gov.mm.

Ministry of Immigration and Population

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Depositors at Myanmar Apex Bank Limited can enjoy reliable banking services on a regular basis without any worry, CBM announces

The Central Bank of Myanmar closely monitors the financial convenience and cash deposit and withdrawal of the Myanmar Apex Bank Limited and provides liquidity support if necessary. Therefore, the CBM issued a statement saying that depositors at the Myanmar Apex Bank Limited could access banking services regularly without any worries yesterday.

Since the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) prosecutes the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Myanmar Apex Bank Limited under Section 55/63 of the Anti-Corruption Law, the Bank has announced that the above persons have terminated their duties and proposed the re-appointment of the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Bank.

The statement said that the Central Bank of Myanmar approved the appointments on 27 April 2022 in accordance with the provisions of the Central Bank of Myanmar Law and the Financial Institutions Law. The Central Bank of Myanmar is making efforts to stabilise the financial system and strengthen the efficient payment and clearing systems.

Therefore, the Central Bank of Myanmar is monitoring Myanmar Apex Bank Limited. It is reported that the financial condition of the Myanmar Apex Bank Limited is stable, and the bank is following the instructions of the Central Bank of Myanmar. Therefore, the central bank has issued a statement saying that those who have savings in Myanmar Apex Bank Limited and people working with the bank do not have to worry.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Announcement of Online e-Visa Reopening

  1. The Ministry of Immigration and Population launched the e-Visa Website (evisa.moip.gov.mm) on 1 September 2014. In light of the evolving COVID-19 situation and rapid increase of COVID-19 cases around the globe, there has been a temporary suspension for all new e-Visa applications since 20 March 2020, 23:59 Myanmar Standard Time (GMT +6:30).
  2. At present, the COVID-19 diagnosis confirmed rate and infection rate have dropped. In support of the economic development of the State, the Online e-Visa system will reopen on 1 April 2022 for business visa applications in accordance with the COVID-19 rules and regulations of the Ministry of Health.
  3. Requirements for the application for Online e-Visa (Business) will be available at the Ministry’s website https://evisa.moip.gov.mm.

Ministry of Immigration and Population

Source: Global New Light of Myanmar

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MoI discusses reopening cinemas

Union Minister for Information U Maung Maung Ohn presided over a virtual coordination meeting on the reopening of cinemas, in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday. First, the Union Minister said despite the modernization of the internet trend, cinemas still exist in every country and some are paying more attention to the cinemas. The role of cinemas will continue to flourish in the future due to the sound system and greatness provided by the cinema. The arts can offer pleasant feelings and entertainment and the activities of artistes can lure the interest of the public. As people emulate the artistes they love and so the role of artistes is in direct contact with the people. The Prime Minister recognizes the artistes as talented persons and professionals and also prioritizes the film industry.

A total of 121 cinemas — 27 State-owned cinemas run by the Information and Public Relations Department, and 94 of the cinemas sold permanently to the private, have been supervised by the region/state governments after the management of these cinemas were handed over to the respective region and state governments starting 2 July 2018 under the 2008 Constitution and the operation completed on 24 May 2021. The ministry also coordinated with the respective region and state governments including Nay Pyi Taw Council to take action against the buyers of 69 cinemas out of 94 cinemas as per the terms and conditions of the contracts.

The State Administration Council Chairman also instructed officials to take serious actions against the cinemas out of 94 sold permanently to the private if they do not show films according to the rules and regulations at the SAC Management Committee Meeting (3/2021) held on 11 March 2021. The SAC Chairman gave directives not to permit the running of other businesses at the cinemas without showing the movies and strictly to supervise the filming in line with the terms and conditions of the contracts. The films are the supportive measure to motivate the public and country. The artistes are also should be encouraged as they offer motivation to the country. The Union minister also highlighted the words of the SAC Chairman regarding the film industry development including the measures to return to the government if the operations do not run properly.

According to the replies of the region and state governments, of 94 cinemas, 25 were suspended the operations due to the outbreak of COVID-19, and among the remaining 69 cinemas, 10 are being constructed so far, 16 under the renovation while 43 do not run the operation at all. He then talked about the importance of film industry development in showing the culture and characteristics of the country to the world and the emergence of proper cinemas for the film producers to receive incomes through their investment. He then expressed the cooperation works with the artistes from different fields, the increase in screening movies between 2013 and 2021, development in film making industry from 2013 and 2019 and the highest numbers of movies screened at the cinemas in 2019. He added that the cinemas will be resumed on 17 April (Myanmar New Year Day) and the efforts of individual business people will support the whole industry as well as the economic objectives of the government. Then, the attendees to the meeting coordinated the discussion. Finally, the Union minister stressed the necessary things and concluded the meeting. The cinemas will resume their operations for the good sakes of artistes, business sectors and the public starting 17 April (Myanmar New Year Day).

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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Foodpanda apologizes for system error, controversial rider fees restored

The online food delivery platform Foodpanda apologized for a system error that occurred between 7:00 am and 7:30 am on 16 March, resulting in a miscalculation of rider fees and causing controversy. The rider fees were restored to the normal rates, according to the Foodpanda statement dated 19 March. This error reflects a K200 fee during the 30-minute glitch, while a rider normally earns between K550 and K750 for a one kilometre delivery distance. The foodpanda has assured that any deduction as a result of this incident will be corrected and reimbursed and apologized for any inconvenience in the recent days.

Foodpanda responded to the controversial issue. Some riders have recently raised concerns about their pay, rising fuel cost pressure, and a few other issues. As independent freelancers, the riders earn an income based on a fair and transparent fee structure that comprises variables such as the number of shifts they take, the distance they have to deliver, and their performance levels over time. The majority of the riders receive K300,000 on average in delivery pay per month while some top riders could earn up to K600,000 per month.

The base delivery payment has been adjusted downwards over the past months in line with the current market rate. Having heard rider feedback and complaints, Foodpanda is looking at urgent ways to supplement or increase rider pay as much as possible. But service disruptions ultimately hurt the business and rider income. The riders are experiencing financial hardships due to the increase in commodity prices. In line with foodpanda’s goal towards uplifting the community, they are working on increasing the delivery pay as soon as possible for a certain period to help alleviate the current plight of Foodpanda riders.

City managers in the respective cities will soon be notified of this increase. Additionally, they have immediately secured extra funding to roll out fuel price subsidies. It will be notified later, as per the statement. In the last two years, amidst a challenging environment, foodpanda remains strongly committed to the Myanmar community so that restaurants can continue to use the platform to keep their businesses running, riders continue to have income and customers can rely on food delivered to them safely. 

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar

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MNA, Air India to repatriate Myanmar nationals in India by relief flights in April

Myanmar National Airlines (MNA) and Air India will fly relief flights in April to help Myanmar nationals who are having difficulties returning home for various reasons, according to the Myanmar Embassy in New Delhi, India. MNA has been operating monthly relief flights to repatriate Myanmar nationals who have been stranded in India for various reasons due to COVID-19 prevention and control measures.

For returnees, relief flights of MNA will fly on 5 and 26 April and Air India will fly on 6 and 20 April respectively to Myanmar. The embassy has announced that those who would like to fly with MNA can send an email to callcenter@flymna.com, contactus@flymna.com and reservations@flymna.com, as well as can make a call to + 951378603-04-06 and +951377840-41-42.

Passengers are required to have a negative RT PCR test result, and those whose visas are about to expire must extend their visas at the https//indianfrro.gov.in/frro/, the official website of the Foreigner Regional Registration Office of the Immigration Bureau of India. If the visa cannot be extended, exit permit applications must be made in advance, according to the statement of the Myanmar Embassy in New Delhi. Regarding Myanmar citizenship issues, +91 852788 3562 and +91 26578822 can be reached, the statement said.

Source: The Global New Light of Myanmar