DOTr TWG suspends Grab-Move It pact for motorcycle taxi services

Published October 1, 2021, 12:44 PM

by Alexandria Dennise San Juan

The Department of Transportation’s (DOTr) motorcycle taxi technical working group (TWG) has ordered the suspension of the partnership between Grab Philippines and bike-hailing firm Move It for alleged violations in some provisions of their agreement.

(Photo from Move It Facebook Page)

“While we conduct a thorough validation of the complaints and allegations, the motorcycle taxi technical working group (TWG) has unanimously decided to issue status quo among the parties,” the TWG said in a letter to Senate Committee on Public Services chairperson Senator Grace Poe.

“The TWG will call all parties concerned and will evaluate the merits while gaining insight from our stakeholders,” it added.

The suspension of the partnership took effect midnight of Sept. 29 or just a week after it was launched last Sept. 23.

According to the TWG, which was composed of the DOTr, Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), and the Land Transportation Office (LTO), they have been informed that the collaboration was not operating in accordance to the agreed parameters and guidelines.

“Grab’s application instead of Move It’s application was used to avail, book, and pay for the ride service; and that the entire process of training, driver onboarding, marketing, issuance of official receipts and the use of the Grab Driver app was all undertaken by Grab,” the TWG explained.

Through the partnership, transport officials added that Grab seems to be a “de facto” member of the government’s motorcycle taxi pilot study which only includes three players namely Angkas, JoyRide, and Move It.

“By giving Grab a de-facto membership in the pilot study, it gave the impression that Move It has relinquished its operation to Grab,” the TWG said.

“Grab’s entry is a circumvention of the processes and guidelines that had been laid down at the start of the study,” it added.

The TWG likewise emphasized that both Grab and Move It “were not prepared to engage in the collaboration.”

Meanwhile, the TWG has assured that it will still pursue the objective of helping lawmakers in crafting a bill to legalize the operations motorcycle taxis as a mode of public transport.

“The TWG reiterates its role in providing the necessary data to the Congress, highlighting the possible legalization of motorcycles as a form of alternative mass transport for Filipinos, ideally focusing on the safety of its passengers and riders,” it said.