Transport Dept calls on NLB to cut costs after “not satisfactory” financial result

The Transport Department says it is encouraging New Lantao Bus Co to find ways to cut costs after a first-half result that was “not satisfactory.”

The bus operator, a subsidiary of listed Kwoon Chung Bus Holdings, reported a HK$3.6 million loss in the first six months which it attributed to higher operating costs, including fuel and wages.

However, despite warning earlier in mid-2017 of the need to rationalise services to save money, no cuts were made.

The TD said that after winning the tender to service two new routes to the HK-Macau bridge border crossing, and with new housing developments in Mui Wo and Tung Chung, “it is anticipated that NLB’s financial performance will be improved.”

In a statement, it said it would “encourage NLB to explore measures to control costs with a view to improving its financial performance.”

But while no major rationalisation was required, the department would closely monitor passenger numbers and “implement rationalisation of bus services as and when necessary.”

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