OSAKA (Kyodo) A taxi operator in Sakai, Osaka Prefecture, launched a new fare system Monday that undercuts the industry standard for the initial fare. Shin-Kanaoka Kotsu Co. is charging ¥320 for the first kilometer, compared with the standard ¥640 to ¥660 for the first 2 km charged by most taxis in the Osaka area. After the first 2 km, the total fares won’t differ much.

The taxi firm failed in February to get permission from transport authorities to introduce a fare of ¥250 per 2 km. Even so, customers traveling less than 2 km can save.

“We would like to encourage short-distance customers to use our taxis,” company President Hitoshi Kitano said, adding he is targeting people going home after shopping.

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