As more are priced out of owning cars, will the cost of vehicle-sharing services shoot up and be passed on to those who use them?
Synopsis: Every second and fourth Monday of the month, The Straits Times takes a hard look at social issues of the day with guests.
The certificate of entitlement (COE) is the permit needed for a vehicle to be used on the road in Singapore. This cost then needs to be added to the cost of the vehicle itself before it hits the road. Coupled with a zero-growth policy, the price of COEs - set by an open tender exercise - has been making the news, repeatedly setting record highs, pushing up the cost of owning a vehicle - and by extension, the cost of transportation all round.
In this episode, ST's podcast editor Ernest Luis hosts colleague and senior transport correspondent Lee Nian Tjoe, and Ms Ramya Ragupathi, an entrepreneur in the food industry. She runs Oh My Goodness, a food manufacturing start-up that specialises in gluten-free, dairy-free and refined sugar-free foods.
They discuss the future and inevitable impact of record COE prices on society as Singapore is pushing for a car-lite society, and why people should not just think of COE prices as having an impact only on those who can afford a car in Singapore.
Also, why COE prices will not plunge below the $100,000 mark, or even return to the sub-50k days.
Highlights (click/tap above):
4:13 As a food start-up owner who can't afford her own vehicle, Ms Ramya on her mix use of car-sharing, ride-hailing and MRT options
5:09 But with factories in Admiralty, Mandai, why sticking to just public transport means "time and work productivity is lost"
8:45 Why increased supply of COEs over coming months could easily be outstripped by higher demand from leasing companies, to grow ride-hailing and car-sharing services
14:15 Bearing higher costs ultimately as consumers of such services
23:27 Making sense of see-sawing motorcycle COE prices in May 2023
25:10 How this impacts gig workers, bus drivers renting bikes to get to work; Ms Ramya on her food sector workers' early morning long commute difficulties
Produced by: Ernest Luis (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Paxton Pang
Edited by: Paxton Pang
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