The Point-to-Point (P2P) transport sector in Singapore has evolved significantly in the last few years with the entry of Private Hire Car (PHC) booking service operators (BSOs) and Third-Party Taxi Booking (TPB) service operators. The P2P sector has two distinct types of services which are distinguished by the way drivers are matched to commuters. The first is street-hail, where commuters flag down an available taxi from the street. The second is ride-hail, where commuters can 'book' a taxi or PHC through smartphone apps, call booking hotlines, or even through online platforms. With the growth of ride-hail services, commuters now have more P2P transport options, while drivers also have more choices on the operators they can drive for.
2. Given the changes in the P2P sector, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) is reviewing the regulatory framework for the P2P sector to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of Singaporeans and our broader transport objectives, while taking into account industry developments. Since November 2018, LTA has been engaging key industry stakeholders such as the National Taxi Association (NTA), National Private Hire Vehicles Association (NPHVA), taxi/PHC drivers and operators, as well as operators that provide pre-booked chauffeured services on the proposed changes to regulations for the P2P sector.
Proposed regulatory changes for consultation
3. As the P2P sector plays an important role in meeting the diverse transport needs of all Singaporeans, LTA is conducting a public consultation from 24 January 2019 to 21 February 2019 to seek the public’s views on the proposed changes.
4. The main objectives of the review of the regulatory framework for the P2P sector are to:
i. Maintain an open and contestable market;
ii. Provide sufficient regulatory oversight to protect the interests and safety of commuters and drivers; and
iii. Streamline regulations to keep business and regulatory costs low, where appropriate.
5. To achieve these objectives, LTA is proposing a new regulatory framework for the P2P sector. This includes prohibiting driver exclusivity arrangements for all parties in the market, such that operators will no longer be allowed to prevent their drivers from driving for other operators. This ensures that drivers are free to choose which operators to drive for, thus providing them with more options. Currently, taxi operators which provide primarily street hail services are licensed but operators that provide pure ride-hail service are not. LTA is also proposing to license all street-hail and ride-hail operators as they provide the same fundamental service of transporting commuters from point to point. Further details about our proposed regulatory framework can be found in the Public Consultation Document attached in Annex A.
6. We welcome your views on the proposals presented in the Public Consultation Document. Please submit your feedback to us by 21 February 2019 via http://bit.ly/PCDP2P, email at P2P_Consultation@lta.gov.sg, or via hardcopy at the following address:
Point-to-Point Transport Services & Vocational Licence Division
Land Transport Authority of Singapore
10 Sin Ming Drive
Annex A: Public Consultation Paper on Changes to Regulations for the Point-to-Point (P2P) Transport Sector