About SMRT’s Bid For London Cab Company Addison Lee

smrtOver the weekend, SMRT announced that it may be making a $1.6 billion bid for a London cab company Addison Lee, only to decide against it later. We know what this means—the transport company has quite a bit of money to spare out of its pockets.

How Come SMRT Has So Much Money?

We dug up some stats from SMRT and it showed that the company’s profit for last year was $61.9 million. This means that SMRT is rakin’ in the dough. It’s not surprising that they are, and it looks like they have been earning more as transport costs have increased. It’s a good thing that they decided not to bid for Addison Lee—the money could be used to stop train disruptions and make their transport network more efficient especially during rush hour.

Here are two charts that show how SMRT has profited off its MRT and LRT systems:

smrtchartA Conflict Of Interest

SMRT may be a public company but is owned by Temasek Holdings—this causes a conflict of interest as we’re not sure if this transport network can serve the people when profits come into play. A public transport company is supposed to make use of its resources to help its people, and increasing privatization makes this situation more complex.

Last we checked, SMRT’s profits are based on government subsidies and taxpayer’s money, so it shouldn’t even be thinking of investing in other transport networks when more can be done to better the system. It’s pretty unfair to demand that we pay for more for transport and yet not have a better and more efficient system with fewer breakdowns.

Yes, we’re all too aware of the increase in buses to help with the commute, but that’s not enough. We have to face that there’s more that still could be done, and it starts with allocating funds where we need them most.


With reference to Channel News AsiaSMRT, BaldingsWorld and AsiaOne
Images via Wikimedia Commons and SMRT