Grab-bing the opportunity, new regulation welcomed

sean-goh-grabPETALING JAYA: One of two major providers of the ride hailing services in the country has praised the tabling of a bill to regulate such services in the Dewan Rakyat.

Grab said they were heartened by the government’s willingness to embrace technology as part of the tools to improve the nation’s transport infrastructure.

“Every step we take towards being regulated is a welcome and positive move towards improving our transport network and services in the country.

“As a local homegrown ride-hailing service, we have always been focused on serving the needs of the people – be it our passengers, driver-partners (both taxi and Grabcar),” Grab country head Sean Goh said, adding that regulation will be part of its effort towards harnessing the digital economy as a viable source of income for the people.

Goh said the company was also looking forward to more details and updates on the regulatory demands and will continue to work with the government and its partners through this period of transition.

“As we inch closer to the completion of this phase of the e-hailing industry, we are committed to work with both the government and our partners to understand the policies and review our operations.

“This is so as to best accommodate all parties with minimal impact to both our partners and passengers, and assist in whatever way possible throughout the transitional period,” he said.

Under the bill tabled yesterday to amend the Commercial Vehicles Licensing Board Act, e-hailing services must apply for licences to operate.

The bill also seeks to introduce a new definition of “e-hailing vehicle” as a motor vehicle with a seating capacity of four persons and not more than 11 people, including the driver, for single or separate fares.

The government also seeks to introduce an intermediation business licence to regulate e-hailing services – such as Uber and Grabcar – as public vehicles.

The licence is for the business of facilitating arrangements, bookings or transactions of an e-hailing vehicle.

Under Section 26A (1) of the bill, it will be compulsory for a company operating e-hailing services to have an intermediation licence and comply with the conditions set by the Commercial Vehicles Licensing Board (CVLB).