LAHORE The plan to bring 2,000 CNG buses in Lahore has run into a difficult situation after the levy of 16pc General Sales Tax in the federal budget on the purchase of new buses. TheNation has learnt that many foreign as well as local transport firms have recently expressed a concern over the situation arising out of the GST. The talk is also there that the bus companies have hinted to take back their investments in the Urban Transport Project if the GST was not scrapped. The firms, it was also learnt, have urged the Punjab Government to push the Federal Government for taking back its decision to levy GST. Rightly placed sources told TheNation that the negotiations in this regard among all the stakeholders were already underway. The sources further said that the implementation of the GST would not only affect the Lahore Urban Transport Project, but also hurt investment in other transport sector projects in Punjab. At least 2,500 buses are required to cater for the thousands of daily commuters in Lahore alone. Today less than 300 buses are plying on the citys 53 routes, with another 38 already closed down. The sources said that after the levy of the GST, the price of a single bus would increase by Rs1.5 million. Either the provincial government has to settle this amount in its own budget by revisiting the earlier agreements with the transport companies or the federal government has to take back the levy of GST. On the other hand, the Lahore Transport Company would receive as many as 50 new CNG buses from China in July this year. According to the sources, the manufacturing company is almost ready to dispatch the buses. An official of the LTC who was alarmed at the GST issue said on Thursday that the situation needed to be addressed immediately. Similarly, the LTC would also receive another fleet of 61 buses by September this year. Another company in China had also made an agreement with LTC to manufacture 100 buses for plying these on various routes of the Lahore city, the official added.