The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has been very vocal recently about going against unregistered Uber and GrabCar vehicles starting August 21. Operators of these online ride-sharing services will be fined P200,000 and be impounded for 3 months. This, according to the government agency, will be strictly implemented after licensed regular taxi operators complained about the unfair competition.
While the actions may have been done with good intentions, commuters are skeptical as LTFRB itself was found to be introducing a similar type of business in the name of Premium Taxi.
Late last month, LTFRB posted on its Facebook page an invitation to a public consultation for the issuance of new franchises for Premium Taxi.
A draft of the memoradum circular has been posted on the agency’s website as well detailing the requirements for operating Premium Taxi.
Premium Taxi, along with Uber, GrabCar and other ride-sharing services such as Tripda and GrabTaxi, are all under the newly introduced transport category Transportation Network Vehicle Service (TNVS).
Asked if the crackdown operation they have previously announced against Uber and GrabCar was intentionally made in favor of their very own Premium Taxi, LTFRB then clarified that their office and the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) “do not and will not put Uber or GrabCar out of business” and would just want them to comply with the Department Order and memorandum circulars issued three months ago.