Parliament: Taxi, private-hire car firms can consult LTA to trial courier services

ComfortDelGro taxis are parked at their vehicle inspection yard on 9 October 2017. (Reuters file photo)

Taxi and private-hire car operators looking to provide courier services can approach the Land Transport Authority (LTA) to discuss the possibility of doing so on a “limited trial basis”, said Senior Minister of State Janil Puthucheary in Parliament on Monday (10 September).

He added that the LTA will work with interested operators to assess the feasibility of such a trial and how it can conducted with minimal impact on the availability of taxis as well as private-hire cars.

The authority will also look at protecting commuters’ interests during such trials – for instance, by ensuring that the appropriate third-party insurance coverage is in place.

The 45-year-old Pasir Ris-Punggol GRC MP was responding to Ang Mo Kio GRC MP Ang Hin Kee, who had asked for an update following calls from the National Taxi Association and National Private Hire Car Association to review rules on the provision of courier services. Ang serves as the executive adviser to both associations.

In his reply, Janil cautioned that taxi and private-hire car drivers are not allowed to deliver goods without a passenger on board, adding that those who violate the rules risk having their vocational licenses revoked.

“Thus far, the LTA has not found any driver in violation of these rules,” he said.

Warning to private-hire car service

Last month, the LTA issued a warning to local private-hire car service Ryde Technologies following the latter’s announcement that it would be allowing its drivers to deliver small items through its new RydeSend service.

We have warned Ryde that its proposed RydeSend service would contravene the regulations prohibiting Public Service Vehicles such as taxis and private hire cars from solely conveying goods,” said an LTA spokesperson in response to queries from Yahoo News Singapore.

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