18 September 2021, Sittwe
All lines of the Shwe Pyi Tan express boat service that were suspended due to the third wave of Covid-19 are set to resume from September 20, but boat fares will increase 20% compared with previous prices, according to the manager of the boat service.
Boat services such as Shwe Pyi Tan, Malikha and Pauktaw Tagun suspended operations on July 20 as part of efforts to control the spread of the virus.
But with coronavirus infection rates decreasing, Shwe Pyi Tan will resume operations as usual, said U San Maw Thein, the boat service’s manager.
“We will increase the price of boat fares by about 20 percent because of the high price of fuel oil,” he said.
The price of fuel oil has increased in Myanmar in part due to rising US dollar and gold prices.
Shwe Pyi Tan will provide its services in line with Covid-19 regulations, meaning social distancing will be enforced with one empty seat in between passengers.
“We try to make it convenient for the passengers as much as we can. We’re raising the boat fares to be able to have enough income to pay salary for staff and to buy fuel oil,” U San Maung Thein said.
Shwe Pyi Tan express boats will run routes between Sittwe-Rathedaung-Buthidaung, Sittwe-Kyaukphyu-Kyauknimaw-Ramree-Taungshay, Sittwe-Taungup-Manaung and Sittwe-Myebon.
It resumed three shorter routes — Sittwe-Pauktaw, Sittwe-Mrauk-U and Sittwe-Minbya — on August 24.
Other express boat services in Arakan State include Malikha, Pauktaw Tagun, Issana Nadi and Shwe Lin Yone.