LTFRB denies Uber's appeal

Posted August 17, 2017

Uber was forced to suspend operations in the Philippines Tuesday, after the ride-sharing giant's efforts to appeal a one-month ban were quashed as it tussles with authorities over driver permits.

The Philippines regulator is now meeting to decide its next step, lawyer Aileen Lizada, a member of the transportation board, told Reuters in a text message. Although it did not give an explicit reason at the time, the move followed Uber's alleged failure to stop registering new drivers, as ordered by the regulator. This episode in the saga didn't last long either.

A company spokesman said Uber was "studying the order".

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He said that it was also agreed that a new regulatory framework needs to be developed, not just for ridesharing services but also to improve our taxi fleets and their ability to serve the riding public and compensate drivers.

Ride-hailing giant Uber yesterday defied a Philippine government order to shut down, branding the suspension a "blatant violation" of its rights but risking its drivers being arrested.

The Uber app is now unavailable in the Philippines.

The LTFRB's freeze has not been a popular decision among Filipino commuters, many of whom regard Uber as more reliable and competitive than outdated public transport services.

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"Now we bring that peer-to-peer model to the Philippines", Arcade City said, adding that new drivers were being recruited.

"Operating more than 50,000 colorum vehicles sets a unsafe precedent, and if not stopped would wreck [sic] havoc to the country's transport plans and programs, specifically the Modernization Program, which aims to enhance transport service and uplift the lives of transport workers", it said.

A year ago the regulator suspended the acceptance and processing of applications for all ride-sharing services, including Uber, to study further how to regulate the industry.

LTFRB has scheduled the hearing on the new appeal next week, August 23.

"If there's been a misunderstanding in the past, that's on us and I apologise for that misunderstanding".

Last month, 50,000 of Uber's and Grab's vehicles were nearly suspended since they lacked certificates of public conveyance to operate.

"The world over we need more people in less cars, simple as that", co-founder Chris Megan said in an e-mail.