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LTFRB orders Grab to lower surge cap from 2x to 1.5x

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) on Wednesday ordered ride-sharing service Grab Philippines to lower its surge cap from 2x to 1.5x while they are still processing applications of new transport network company players.

"This is to ensure that the fares will be at a rate that is acceptable to the existing number of TNVS (that are transferring to Grab)," LTFRB board member Aileen Lizada said in a hearing in Quezon City.

The management of Grab said they would comply with the downgrading of the surge rate.

"We respect the board's decision to further lower the cap ng surge and we understand their justification for it. This is in fact a critical time. We believe that as soon as new players come in, the board will study again the cap," Leo Gonzales, Grab's spokesperson, told reporters.

Gonzales admitted that the drivers would be affected by LTFRB's order.

"We hope maintindihan nila 'yung reasons for it. We only do our best to serve the public. I'm sure the riding public will be happier, this whole issue with the acquisition and all and the effect on the market, the fares is very dynamic... we understand the board," Gonzales said.

In the same hearing, legal counsels of Grab underscored that they are still interested in seeking re-accreditation before the LTFRB.

When asked by Lizada about the high fares, the lawyers said prices are set in the market place.

They also contributed the supposed price increase to "drivers going offline, drivers who are off the road and even the holidays" as some drivers also took their vacation.

Grab, however, assured the public that they are compliant with the fare rates set by the government. —JST, GMA News