Daniel Zeichner – 2015 Parliamentary Question to the Department for Transport

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Daniel Zeichner on 2015-12-03.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the implications for competition in the bus market of (a) voluntary partnership agreements and (b) statutory quality partnerships; and what account he plans to take of those implications in framing legislation on bus franchising.

Andrew Jones

Competition issues in bus partnerships are primarily a matter for the Competition and Markets Authority and for the local authorities involved in the partnership concerned. I anticipate that the Buses Bill will include new measures on partnership working between local transport authorities and bus operators.

The aim of these measures would be to facilitate more effective partnershipdevelopment between local authorities and bus operators, resulting in better quality bus services for passengers, whilst ensuring fair bus market competition.

Under a bus franchising regime competition would be for, rather than within, the bus market. The competition issues that apply are therefore materially different from those associated with partnerships arrangements between bus operators and local authorities.