Grab reitarates compliance with LTFRB rules

MANILA-- Transport network company Grab Philippines has reiterated that it has been complying with the rules of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) as it has submitted the necessary documents for the accreditation of its transport network vehicle services (TNVS).

Grab made the statement Tuesday as it announced that it has paid the PHP5 million fine that was imposed by the LTFRB after some of their TNVS units have been found to be operating without certificates of public convenience (CPC) or provisional authority (PA).

The ride sharing company explained that it has been submitting the applications and requirements for CPC of its accredited partners to the board and were activating drivers to replenish its churn rate or those that have fell off the platform because of various reasons such as work limitations, job changes, changes in personal circumstances, etc., and chose not to pursue driving as a TNVS.

Grab's churn rate ranges between 10 to 20 percent monthly.

Since February 2017, we have been submitting, on behalf of some TNVS drivers their applications for PA extensions/renewal. The LTFRB has been accepting hundreds of these applications. They have repeatedly asked for copies of OR/CR and our drivers have repeatedly complied with the request through us. The LTFRB has not released a single extension even for the hundreds that have completed their documents and submitted repeated copies. It has been 5 long months and the LTFRB announced just yesterday a one-stop shop for PA extensions processing. Almost half a year of waiting, Fiona Nicolas, Government Communications Manager, Public Affairs Department, Grab Philippines said in a statement.

Despite having complete requirements awaiting submission, thousands upon thousands of TNVS are still branded as colorum even as they have completed their requirements. Not all, but a huge number of them, she added.

Grab also assured the public that it provides insurance coverage at no cost to its drivers to ensure their safety as well as its passengers. It also consistently reviews driver performance and swiftly responds to complaints by suspending drivers real time pending further investigation.

With or without PA/CPC, we assure the LTFRB that our passengers are insured for 200,000 for death and 20,000 for injuries. It is unfortunate that despite the fact that we have already informed the LTFRB of this over 3 months ago, they have chosen to still label us publicly as having no insurance.

The firm stated that it will work with the government to ensure a level playing field between the TNCs, taxi operators and other modes of transport. Leveling the playing field must be in the form of improving the standards, behavior and technology of taxis and other sectors to be at par with TNCs and TNVS, and not to force the TNC industry to regress back to old ways with outdated regulations. We are not taxis, why force us to be like them. We would rather help them improve. We are calling on the LTFRB to work with TNCs and TNVS to level up the services of the other modes of transport for the benefit of the riding public, according to Nicolas.

Grab expressed its gratitude for the support of the commuters for the TNVS industry and appealed that proper legislation must be set in place to craft clear policies on regulating the industry.

LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra III has stated that it does not intend to put to a stop the ride sharing services in the country and are only cracking down on colorum TNVS.

It is also inviting both Uber and Grab to be part of a Technical Working Group (TWG) that will address various concerns such as accreditation and pending applications, accountability and dynamic pricing scheme.

The LTFRB has established a one stop shop that will process CPCs that are about to expire until end of July 2017. It shall likewise issue a Memorandum Circular extending the validity of CPCs from 1 year to 2 years and direct TNCs to extend their respective accreditation of their TNVS.

Source: Philippine News Agency