Difficult to see how approved deal was ‘secret’

I NEED to correct some errors in your coverage (News Guardian, November 17) on the report of the Competition Commission into bus services.

Firstly, the deal you suggest was ‘secret’ was actually notified by both operators to the Office of Fair Trading (the OFT) and it approved the deal as it concluded that it had a minimal effect on competition.

It is difficult to see how a deal made so public and approved by the relevant competition authority can be a ‘secret’.

Secondly, the Competition Commission does not suggest that there has been any reduction in competition in North Tyneside.

It reports that discussions took place between operators on the possible development of an integrated ‘Quality Network’ for North Tyneside, which the report acknowledges would have needed Nexus approval to proceed. These proposals were not proceeded with and no agreement was reached on any bus services in North Tyneside.

Thirdly, bus competition in North Tyneside is now at its highest ever level.

Go North East continues to increase its passengers, its investment and its competitive operations and is very pleased to say that the independent consumer watchdog (Passenger Focus) has reported a remarkable 92 per cent satisfaction rate amongst our passengers.

PETER HUNTLEY

Managing Director

Go North East