The Sri Lanka Government is planning to develop an effective and people-friendly public transport system which would provide economic benefit to the country.
The Ministry of Transport has drawn up a master plan for this purpose and the bottom line of this project is to promote a transport system which is environment-friendly, accessible and affordable to commuters. The master plan includes measures for electrification and widening railways, urban railway development, Ministry added.
The Ministry is conducting feasibility studies to launch the Bus Rapid Transit system in urban areas to enhance efficiency in transport. The 60 percent public and 40 percent private transport composite has to be maintained. Currently there are more private buses in operation than SLTB buses.
It is vital for the government to encourage people to use bus and railway transport. Policy measures to address fuel prices, route costs, quality of vehicles, standard of fuel and shift to electrical vehicles are also vital.
The Ministry focuses on niche areas such as long distance express passenger service, freight transport and suburban commuter service. Plans are afoot to setup inland container depots to minimize congestion.