East coast ferry line cuts fuel surcharge ahead of schedule

NORTH SYDNEY, N.S. — Marine Atlantic customers got an early Christmas present as the ferry service decided to immediately cut its fuel surcharge.

The fuel surcharge from the Crown Corporation will now be set at 9 percent, which is a 65 percent decrease from the previous quarter.

Originally, the ferry service planned on holding on to its fuel surcharge until its next fuel delivery in early January. Marine Atlantic was hoping to run off diesel in its 17 million liter storage facility, which was purchased in September when diesel prices were much higher.

The move comes after it was reported this week that politicians were pressuring the ferry to cut the surcharge as other services have done in Canada, namely B.C. ferries Corp.

MP Gerry Byrne called on the North Sydney-Port Aux Basques called on Marine Atlantic this week to drop the surcharge to reflect today’s fuel prices.

Now, based on the current global oil markets Marine Atlantic expects cost for fuel will decrease compared to the previous shipment.

“Based upon the global markets, we are now in a position to decrease the fuel surcharge,” noted the corporation in a letter to customers.

The fuel surcharge is based upon the corporation’s total fuel cost and is set on a quarterly basis. The fuel surcharge will be reviewed again in March 2009.

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