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Monday, October 05, 2009

Marine Atlantic increases fuel surcharge

They did what was predicted, only they done a heck of a lot more.

My numbers at the start of the month showed a possibility that Marine Atlantic would increase its rates by close on three percentage points. However, today Marine Atlantic announced that it will increase its fuel surcharge from the six per cent rate to a whopping 13.8 per cent, an increase that more than doubles the surcharge on ferry rates.

While the increase may be justified, it's who has to pay for it that doesn't suit well with anyone in Newfoundland and Labrador. An extra hunk of cash from any business in this province in the wake of recession doesn't bode well, especially knowing surcharges will increase as early as October 26th this year.

Again, we're faced with an increase in the artificially placed inflation rate on any goods coming into the province and again, we have to deal with increased costs of exporting from this province, not to mention increases in consumer prices leading up to Christmas.

I'm of the thinking we need a concrete solution to this problem of extra fuel costs to a government run service that was guaranteed with confederation and it's terms of union. Why is it that the federal government is taking a hands off approach to this when they have acted to pour millions into the mainland automotive industry? Why does the government not put extra money into Marine Atlantic just to offset the rising costs of marine diesel fuels?

It would be the Federal Government equivalent of supporting the Atlantic Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador economy by doing so, the same as they've supported the auto industry in Ontario.

I just think it's due time the Prime Minister's office dealt with the matter rather than make it a "self sustaining" marine operation.

Oh well. Time to write the Prime Minister's office again!



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