Bus firms profits under pressure

The profitablity of Dutch bus companies is under increasing pressure from government rules on buying new buses and the price war to win new contracts, news agency ANP reports on Tuesday, quoting ING transport experts.

The ING researchers say bus companies are now competing for contracts by offering to provide bus services below cost price. This is making it increasingly difficult to buy new vehicles, researcher Edwin Olijerhoek told ANP.
More than half of the new buses onthe road are leased and that percentage is increasing. Olijerhoek said.
EU and Dutch rules mean buses have to meet increasingly tough standards on pollution, passenger safety and accessibility. This means old buses are being sold off well before the end of their natural life, which is a waste of money, Olijerhoek was quoted as saying.

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