ECONOMY

Coastal shipping fares set to increase after VAT hike

Coastal shipping fares are certain to rise for passengers, vehicles and goods after the emergency measures announced by the government yesterday. The rise in value-added tax from 9 to 10 percent and from 19 to 21 percent will have a direct impact on fares, translating into an immediate 1 to 2 percent hike in passenger tickets and a 2 percent rise in rates for goods and vehicles. It will also mean a rise in the cost of services provided on board ships, which includes the cost of products on sale and consumed in bars and restaurants on vessels. Coastal shipping companies have also decided to temporarily stop some of their itineraries, such as some services linking Piraeus with Iraklio in Crete, given that they will be facing higher charges, including the rise in the cost of fuel by some 60 percent from last year.