Comes after transport department’s new regulations to legalise hailing apps
GrabCar to now focus on rapidly expanding its service across the Philippines
MALAYSIAN-founded and now Singapore-headquartered GrabTaxi said its GrabCar private hire vehicle booking service became the first service of its kind in the Philippines to be fully accredited as a Transportation Network Company (TNC) by the Land Transportation Franchising & Regulatory Board (LTFRB).
The LTFRB is an agency under the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) which is responsible for policies, laws, and regulations of public land transportation services.
The GrabCar announcement follows new regulations released by the DOTC in May, creating the Transportation Network Vehicle Service (TNVS) classification which would allow ride-sharing smartphone applications to be made legal.
“The TNVS classification will allow app-based services offered by Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) to exist within our regulatory framework,” Philippine Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph (Jun) Abaya said then in a statement posted on the DOTC website.
Under the new classification, a TNC is defined as an “organisation that provides pre-arranged transportation services for compensation using an Internet-based technology application or a digital platform technology to connect passengers with drivers using their personal vehicles.”
The DOTC said then that it is also imposing certain standards for vehicle eligibility, such as the requirement of global positioning system (GPS) tracking and navigation devices for convenient and safer services.
Only sedans, Asian Utility Vehicles (AUVs), Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs), vans, or other similar vehicles will be allowed.
In a statement, GrabCar Philippines head Natasha Bautista said its accreditation validates the company’s efforts in providing the safest and most convenient rides for passengers in the Philippines.
“With full accreditation, more Filipino commuters will be able to use GrabCar and be confident that we offer a legitimate and safe private hire service.
“Our GrabCar accreditation by LTFRB is a historical occasion. We commend the Philippine Government for collaborating with our team to revolutionise transport in the Philippines through the development of game-changing regulations that champion innovation and public safety for society,” she added.
The requirements for TNC accreditation include a business permit, certificate of registration duly issued by the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR), business model proposal with proposed fare rates and service charges, and complaint mechanism against vehicle owners and drivers, GrabCar said in its statement.
“GrabCar has been very collaborative. Since day one of operations, it has been working closely with us to ensure that the policy on TNCs prioritises passenger safety,” said LTFRB executive director Roberto Cabrera.
“We are happy to announce that GrabCar has already been accredited upon meeting all government requirements, and we are positive that this will revolutionise the Philippine transportation industry,” he said in the statement issued by GrabCar.
Meanwhile, Bautista said GrabCar will now focus on rapidly expanding its service, which is available through its GrabTaxi taxi-hailing app, to serve more passengers across the Philippines.
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