Grab pricing: Gov't understands requests to determine a floor price, but wants to avoid interfering – Loke –

The government says it is exploring the requests that have been made to determine a floor price for ride-hailing services, but is looking to remain committed to its current policy of not interfering with pricing, The Star reports.

According to transport minister Anthony Loke, while the ministry understands the request by ride-hailing drivers, it is also of the view that the existing dynamic pricing system should remain in place. “The drivers want this (floor price) to be imposed so that each trip they make will be worth the while, but if this is implemented, consumers will face higher prices,” he said.

Nonetheless, he said that drivers should not be allowed to operate at a loss, and that their welfare must also be looked into. “This is something that we need to consider, and discussions are still ongoing,” he said.

Loke said this in response to questions from reporters over Grab Drivers Malaysia Association (GDMA) vice-president Mohd Azril Ahmad’s call for discussions to be held between the gig industry and the government. Mohd Azril had asked for a floor price to be determined for services provided by ride-hailing drivers and delivery riders.

In February, the association had voiced its unhappiness over the latest rate revision made by Grab, which lowered distance charges from 70 sen to 25 sen per km. The company said that this was balanced out by increasing time charges from 20 sen to 43 sen per minute, and that its driver-partners would gain from the new rates, as they would be paid higher during rush hours even for shorter distances due to traffic.

However, Grab drivers were reportedly not satisfied with the adjustment, saying it would result in a 65% drop in earnings per km. They added that congestion is infrequent and mostly occurs only in KL and Selangor.

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