NEWS

No buses, trolley buses or metro on Tuesday

As the price of tickets for public transport increases by up to 40 percent on Tuesday, commuters face more frustration with strikes and work stoppages set to disrupt most services.

Workers on the metro, who staged a 24-hour walkout yesterday, are to hold a fresh 24-hour strike on Tuesday while staff on the Kifissia-Piraeus electric railway (ISAP), who also walked out on Monday, have called a 48-hour strike starting on Wednesday.

Complicating matters, city bus workers, who walked off the job for five hours yesterday, are to step up their action with a 48-hour strike starting on Tuesday.

Trolley bus workers have also called a 48-hour walkout from Tuesday. The management of all the public transport firms have launched appeals against the planned strikes in a bid to get them overturned.

The metro strike was declared illegal on Monday night but employees decided to push ahead with action anyway.

As of Tuesday, the 1-euro, 90-minute ticket for all modes of transport is being replaced by a 1.20-euro ticket for single journeys and a 1.40-euro multiple-journey ticket.

Apart from a seven-day truce last week, strikes and stoppages have been disrupting the public transport system every week since the beginning of December but unions had recently agreed to hold off further action. Talks with government officials over the weekend however left metro and ISAP staff disappointed.

Transport Minister Dimitris Reppas insisted on Monday that the government would push through its reforms to curb the debts of loss-making public transport companies. In a parliamentary debate on the reforms yesterday, only ruling PASOK and Dora Bakoyannis, a former conservative foreign minister, expressed support.