A group of taxi operators urged the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) toincrease the flagdown rate to P50 cushion the impact of the new tax law on taxi operators and drivers.
The present flagdown rate is P40.
Bong Suntay, Philippine National Taxi Organization president, said the number of taxi fleets operating in the National Capital Region is down to 40 percent “because of high operating cost.” He warned that this figure could go down because of the impact of the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) law that took effect on January 1, 2018.
The law imposes excise tax and value added tax on petroleum products.
LTFRB spokesperson Aileen Lizada however said the taxi group has to justify its petition for a higher flagdown rate.
“They need to justify why the Board should grant a fare increase and what services will be delivered and likewise we need to hear the side of the commuters’ group before the Board will issue any order,” Lizada said.
“We need to study this very well because the government also lowered income tax percentage,” she added.
Transport network company Grab Philippines also said it will file a petition for six to 10 percent fare increase to cover the high operating cost of drivers.
“The logic behind surge has nothing to do behind the logic behind the operating cost. One thing we can explore is this increase we are filing for,” Grab Philippines Country Head Brian Cu said in a press briefing in Makati City on Wednesday. “As much as we want to keep the price we have today, we cannot shortchange the drivers,” he added.
Cu said demand for Grab rides increased by 30 percent in the previous year.