USD 3,700,000 will be allocated
Bolivia: Evo Morales and carriers reached an agreement to convert 300 vehicles
The Government and union of transport leaders yesterday agreed on the switch of this amount of Santa Cruz’s public transport fleet into natural gas system, in a first phase. The money to pay the cost of the initiative, which will become effective in August, will come from the cylinder requalification fund. The President of the Nation attended the meeting together with Minister of Economy and Public Finance Luis Arce and Minister of Hydrocarbons and Energy Juan José Sosa and members of the transport unions.
The public transport conversion plan includes the nine departmental capitals of the country. Officials present at the meeting estimated that Bs 26 million budgeted (approximately USD 3.7 million) will cover the cost of switching over 400 buses across the country. "We should not discount the possibility of getting more resources to intensify the conversion of vehicles to CNG," minister Sosa stated, according a report published by El Deber.
At the same time, the Government promised that it will sign an agreement to allocate USD 100 million from international credit to face the fleet conversion around the country. The president of the Bolivian Confederation of Drivers, Franklin Durán, said that the agreement will be firstly effective in La Paz, where there is already a plan regarding the purchase of vehicles to modernize the local public transport fleet.
In the city of Santa Cruz, there are about 7,000 buses registered on the 123 route lines with license to operate. The main goal of its conversion to CNG is the reduction of diesel consumption. However, over the west side of the country, most public transport vehicles are powered by gasoline.