The Minister has agreed to continue funding for the industry and local authorities at the current level for up to six months providing progress is made on devising a new system that will be focused on services rather than the current fuel usage based system.
The Minister said:
“We have had a full and frank discussion of how we take this matter forward.”
“ Whilst there are differences I am confident that with good will and hard work we can reach a solution.
“ I made it clear that there has been no reduction in the funding the Welsh Government provides to the bus industry and, whilst these discussions continue in a productive manner, there will be no cut in support for the next six months.
"The Westminster Government has severely cut the resources available to Welsh Government which has put enormous pressures on our transport budget. We are determined to provide the best level of bus services in Wales that we possibly can but that means doing things differently.”
Michael Morton, Chairman of Confederation of Passenger Transport , the trade association of the bus industry, said;
" Bus operators are fully committed to providing an efficient, sustainable bus network across Wales, and we are pleased to have the opportunity of being part of the dialogue with partners in the Welsh Government and the Regional Transport Consortia.
“ We now look forward to exploring and debating with them funding alternatives in order to bring certainty to the industry and its passengers.”
Cllr Trevor Roberts representing TAITH and TraCC Regional Transport Consortia said:
"We welcome the Minister's commitment to continue funding crucial community bus services whilst discussions continue over future funding.”
“ We also welcome the Minister's clear guidance in setting objectives for the review. Delivering good quality bus networks is a key part of effective integrated transport in Wales and the four Transport Consortia and Local Authority partners are committed to working closely with the Welsh Government and Bus Operators to deliver the best solutions possible."