Japan Ministry Considering Flexible Train Fare System


Tokyo, Feb. 2 (Jiji Press)--The Japanese transport ministry has begun considering introducing a system in which train fares vary depending on the level of congestion and other conditions, it was learned Tuesday.

The ministry hopes to help ease congestion on trains further with a flexible fare system at a time when the ongoing coronavirus crisis is prompting more and more companies to adopt staggered commuting.

The flexible fare plan was included in a draft basic program on the nation’s transportation policy, which was presented to Monday’s meeting of a relevant panel of experts, informed sources said.

The basic program, which will serve as the ministry’s medium- to long-term transport policy guidelines, is expected to be formalized this spring. Based on the program, the ministry will examine congestion-easing effects of the proposed fare system and issues that need to be cleared, the sources said.

East Japan Railway Co. <9020>, or JR East, and West Japan Railway Co. <9021>, or JR West have voiced their intentions to consider such a system, prompted by the spread of the new coronavirus.

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Jiji Press