Tugade signs order giving LTFRB authority to regulate ride-hailing firms

 Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade has signed an order allowing the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to regulate transport network vehicle services (TNVS) and transport network companies (TNCs).

LTFRB board member Atty. Aileen Lizada said TNCs and TNVS will now be “subjected to the full regulation and supervision” of the board.

“The TNCs and TNVS are subjected to the full regulation and supervision by LTFRB, including but not limited to application and approval/denial of franchise, setting of fares, routes, operating conditions, and imposition of fines, suspension and cancellation of franchise,” Lizada told reporters via Viber.

Lizada said fares will be determined by the LTFRB after the conduct of a public hearing or consultation with the TNCs and TNVS.

LTFRB Chariman Martin Delgra III also assured the public that the agency is processing applications to make sure that no colorum vehicles would go out on the streets.

“The LTFRB has been engaging with TNCs and TNVS operators and drivers far more often than any other group over the past year. It is because we see their value, and because we believe that if done right, they will make a big difference and our commuters will ultimately benefit,” Delgra said in a statement.

Tugade, for his part, said that putting TNVS and TNCs under LTFRB regulation would benefit all parties concerned. Moreover, he said competition will be fair as it will be a level playing field.

According to Lizada, the department order, which was drafted last April, is effective immediately.

In the past, fares were set by TVNS and TNCs. Under Department Order 2015-11 issued by then-Transport Secretary Joseph Abaya, the LTFRB only has an oversight function and can only step in to set fares during emergency situations.

The LTFRB, however, disputed the validity of the order because it was implemented without their knowledge. /ee

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