Public transport in Jakarta could become free with a new road pricing system being implemented, Governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama said.

The city will introduce an electronic road pricing (ERP) scheme to regulate traffic. The fees collected through this system will be used to subsidise public transport, he said. And with sufficient funds, public transport could become free of charge.

“If ERP generates a good enough income I want buses to be free … for the whole city. This will improve the lives of Jakartans,” the Governor said, according to the Jakarta Globe.

The system will be entirely run by the city government. The Governor decided against working with the private sector so that all of the revenue goes to the city and can be used for public transport.

“Earlier we wanted to cooperate with private firms. But I decided not to share with the private sector so 100% [of the revenue] generated goes to the city and we can subsidise,” he said.

The ERP system will replace a failed carpooling system which required each private car to carry at least three people on busy roads in the city. The system has, however, led to people giving themselves up for hire as passengers for drivers to meet the requirement.

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