Friday, September 18, 2009

An anti-social policy?

I'm listening to a speech by communist deputy Eduard Musuc in which he is complaining about the 'anti-social' moves taking by the Chisinau mayoralty to increase fares for public transport and for water provision. Other communists have been making hay out of this for a couple of days already.

If, however, you look more deeply at what the mayoralty has done, you will see that the move is actually meant to protect the poorest of Chisinau's citizens. At the moment, these services are subsidised heavily by the city regardless of the incomes of the consumers. What Chirtoaca has done is to (a) remove the universal subsidy, such that consumers pay the true cost of the service, and (b) target the funds freed-up through direct payment to the poor. The poor, who the communists claim to represent, will be better off.

It should also be noted that a bus fare costing 12 eurocents is still extremely cheap by European standards.

One hopes (forlornly probably) that M1 will tell both sides of this story.

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