Singapore’s Land Transport Authority (LTA) has issued GrabTaxi and Hailo certificates of registration to operate their third-party taxi booking mobile applications in the Republic, according to an official release yesterday.

The certificates of registration will be valid for three years starting December 1.

This comes after the LTA made it a requirement earlier this year for third-party taxi booking services with more than 20 participating taxis to register with them as part of the newly-enacted Third-Party Taxi Booking Service Providers Act.

Uber‘s UberTAXI, MoobiTaxi, Karhoo and ConnexTaxi have submitted applications to LTA but are still awaiting approval.

Existing service providers who were already operating before September 1, 2015, however, are allowed to continue operating without a certificate of registration, said the LTA.

It also said that existing service providers, as a “transitory measure”, will be allowed to operate without a certificate of registration if they have applied to register with LTA before December 1, 2015 and have yet to have their application processed.

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One application that has been rejected is that of PAIR Taxi’s, whose fare model did not meet the fare-charging conditions stipulated in the regulatory framework.

According to a report from the Straits Times, the company suspended operations late on Monday, when it was notified by LTA of its decision.

Service providers who operate without certificates of registration are liable to a fine not exceeding S$10,000 (US$7,100) or imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months, or both.

The conditions that registered service providers must comply with are as follows:

  • Dispatch only licensed taxis and drivers holding valid Taxi Driver’s Vocational Licences
  • Fare-related safeguards for commuters
  • Taxi booking services cannot require commuters to specify their destinations when making bookings, though commuters can still do so if they wish
  • Allow commuters to indicate special needs
  • Customer support services for commuters

Image credit: Shutterstock

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