Marcos backs legalization of motorcycle taxis

Alexis Romero - The Philippine Star
Marcos backs legalization of motorcycle taxis
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. inspects the Airport to New Clark City Access Road (ANAR) on February 21, 2024.
STAR / KJ Rosales

MANILA, Philippines — President Marcos has expressed support for the legalization of motorcycle taxis and easing transportation network vehicle service (TNVS) regulations, saying the policies will provide more choices to passengers, drivers and businesses.

Marcos issued the statement after a meeting with officials of Grab Holdings Inc., a Singapore-based technology firm engaged in ride-hailing, food delivery, parcel delivery, digital payment and financial services at Malacañang last Tuesday.

“We’re working with Grab to legalize motorcycle taxis and relax regulations on TNVS. More transport options will benefit commuters, drivers and MSMEs,” the President said in a Facebook post.

The law does not permit the use of motorcycles to transport passengers or freight.

In 2019, the government started to pilot test the operation of motorcycle taxis in Metro Manila and Cebu due to growing calls for more accessible public transportation modes.

Grab has recommended the legalization of motorized taxis and the deregulation of the supply of TNVS.

The Department of Transportation said the lifting of the supply cap requires further evaluation that will take into account data provided by transport network firms and views expressed during consultations with stakeholders.

Some 40,000 drivers are registered with Grab’s TNVS, about 30,000 of them plying Metro Manila routes.

In a separate Facebook post, the Presidential Communications Office (PCO) said Marcos has ordered an immediate review of the proposal to legalize motorcycle taxis.

At the same meeting, Marcos cited Grab Philippines’ contribution to local employment.

“Your impact on unemployment numbers... comprises about 1.1 percent of the increase in employment in the past year and half... the 300,000 that we’re talking about has a significant effect,” Marcos was quoted by a PCO statement as saying.

Grab Holdings Inc. chief executive officer Anthony Tan told Marcos that the company was doing 8,000 rides a day when it bought ride-hailing company Move It.

The figure has risen to more than 300,000 daily.

Grab Philippines aims to expand its operations to 10 more cities and municipalities.

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