Ride-sharing regulations to be tabled in Parliament (Updated)

KUALA LUMPUR: Laws to regulate ride-sharing mobile applications such as Uber and GrabCar will be tabled in the coming Parliament sitting on March 6.

Deputy Transport Minister Datuk Ab Aziz Kaprawi (pix) said the regulations will also bar the practice of "fishing" (ulat in Malay) by Uber or GrabCar drivers in hot spots such as airports.

"Fishing" refers to the practice of some unscrupulous Uber or GrabCar drivers who switch their status from "occupied" to "available" when they have already picked up passengers.

This will allow the driver to pick up more passengers and make more money in a single trip, which is not allowed.

"For sure (we will include it in the Bill). We already have enforcement by the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD) at terminals such as KLIA to eliminate this practice as this creates a system that we do not allow," Ab Aziz told a press conference today.

He said the Road Transport Department (RTD) is also working together with SPAD and Malaysia Airport Holdings Berhad (MAHB) to monitor and curb such practices.

Ab Aziz said the new regulations will also include a blacklist for Uber or GrabCar drivers who break the law.

Meanwhile, he said the growing business of hitching rides on motorcycles for a fare is also considered illegal and dangerous as the vehicles are not licensed to operate by RTD.

"We have not issued any licenses for motorcycle taxis, so anyone conducting this business is doing this illegally," Ab Aziz said, adding that personal vehicles are not allowed to take passengers for fares.

Dego Ride, the first motorcycle taxi service in Malaysia, was launched in November and is now a fast growing service as it offers an even cheaper alternative to Uber or GrabCar, boasting rates of RM2.50 for the first three km and 60sen for each km after.

Motorcycle taxis are common in other South East Asian countries such as Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Indonesia, and the Philippines.