Hotels, malls deny exclusive rights to taxi companies

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PETALING JAYA: Hotels and malls are backing away from any association with public transport providers on an exclusive basis on the issue of picking up passengers in front of their premises.

Two 5-star hotels in Kuala Lumpur have denied such claims by a major taxi service provider, adding that they also had no restriction on Uber and Grab cars picking up passengers from the lobby, TheSun reported today.

A spokesperson for Ritz Carlton Hotel Kuala Lumpur, said there was no such agreement that entitled any taxi company exclusive rights at the hotel.

“We can confirm there was never any agreement between the Ritz Carlton and Big Blue Taxi,” Ritz Carlton spokesman Natalie Hay told the daily.

She was referring to claims by Big Blue Taxi Facilities Sdn Bhd founder Shamsubahrin Ismail that other taxi companies and ride-sharing companies are not allowed to pick up passengers at the Ritz Carlton lobby.

Sunway Putra Hotel General Manager Christopher Bong also dismissed any such ties with taxi companies.

Bong added that the only exclusivity agreement in place was with a Naza Ventures Holdings subsidiary, Prestigelimo, which provides chauffeured limousine services for its guests.

“We have no problems with our guests using Uber or Grab services”, he was quoted as saying by TheSun, adding that Shamsubahrin’s claims were unnecessary and that the matter will be brought up with Prestigelimo.

Phang Saul Lian, who is Bong’s counterpart at the adjoining mall, Sunway Putra Mall, also confirmed they too have no ties, formal or otherwise, with Big Blue Taxi or any other taxi provider.

It was reported last week that Uber and Grab were barred from picking up passengers from the lobby of some hotels and malls.

According to Shahmsubahrin, it was due to a sub-contract that his and a few other taxi companies had been given by another Naza Ventures Holdings company, Zalnas Limousine Sdn Bhd, which had exclusive contracts with the establishments.

He also provided copies of letters issued by Zalnas, giving such exclusive rights to the taxi companies. The letters, faxed to TheSun, showed it was signed by Zalnas vice-president Suradi Haji Sulaiman.

It was also confirmed that there was no letter of agreement issued by any of the hotels or malls.

However, Shamsubahrin provided invoices that were issued to the taxi companies for special stickers costing RM400 each. The report did not state if the invoices were issued by the hotels or by Zalnas.