Uber, Grab under fire from merger, passenger complaints

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The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) said on Monday that the motu propio or informal review on Grab and Uber’s deal will continue despite Uber’s shutdown in the Philippines.

Both parties have until today to explain why they failed to continue operating their respective platforms.

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) said also on Monday that it will issue a show cause order to Grab drivers who refuse to accept the bookings of passengers or ask the passengers to cancel their bookings.

“The motu proprio review of the Philippine Competition Commission shall take its course in pursuit of its mandate,” the PCC said in a statement.


“The parties are given until April 17 to explain why they have failed to continue operating the platform, as required in the Interim Measures Order,” it added.

“As the antitrust authority, our lens is always focused on the market—in this case, we are reviewing the potential effects on competition in the merger between Grab and Uber in the ride-hailing platform,” it added.

As of yesterday, Uber users have received e-mails with a direct endorsement to transfer to Grab as the sole provider for ride-sharing services.

“When a big player buys out its competitor, there will be many economic and legal factors that need to be scrutinized. PCC intends to expedite the completion of the review ahead of the allowed timeframe given how it is imbued with public interest,” PCC said.

PCC said Grab’s buyout of Uber will mean the latter gobbling up 93 percent of the ride-hailing market.

“The accreditation of new TNCs [transport network companies]is a welcome development to allow passengers to have more choices. We note, however, that the incoming TNCs are left with only 7 percent share in the market,” it said.

“In the end, PCC stands with the passengers to protect them from the perils of monopoly,” PCC added.

LTFRB summons Grab drivers

The LTFRB meanwhile to show cause order to Grab drivers who ask passengers to cancel trips or refuse bookings.

“We issued a show cause order to the TNVS [transport network vehicles]who committed such things,” LTFRB Board Member Aileen Lizada told reporters in Filipino on Monday.

Since the announced exit of rival company Uber in the Philippines, Uber drivers have begun transferring to the Grab platform. However, numerous complaints arose from the huge hike in fares as well as drivers refusing bookings or canceling trips.

Uber ceased its operations in the Philippines on Monday, April 16, making Grab the lone transport network company to operate in the country. LTFRB earlier ordered Grab to decrease its surge cap from two times to 1.5 times until a new TNC comes in.

Grab . meanwhile, said in a text message that it is continuously accepting former Uber drivers transferring to its platform. Also, Grab earlier said it will sanction drivers who do not abide with the company’s rules in serving their passengers.

with REICELENE JOY N. IGNACIO

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