PCC wants Uber, Grab to operate separately amid deal review

April Rafales, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 05 2018 10:35 PM | Updated as of Apr 06 2018 02:00 AM

MANILA - The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) has recommended that Uber and Grab continue their operations separately while it reviews the ride-sharing services' merger.

The commission added that no actions will be otherwise made prior to the culmination of the commission’s review.

Uber will also not be allowed to share information on pricing, data, promotions, and customers to Grab.

However, both expressed their objection to the PCC's recommendation.

Uber said it has no more employees in the office and is ready to leave the Philippines.

The two clarified that the acquisition was effective in the whole Southeast Asia.

PCC chairman Arsenio Balisacan said they are just making sure that the acquisition will not work to the disadvantage of the riding public.

"If the transaction will further consummate it will be more difficult to undo later on, and one thing more if it is indeed harmful to the consumer or inflict more harm to the riding public we want to make sure that will not happen,” he said.

Atty. Aileen Lizada, board member of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), said three firms have applied for accreditation as transport network companies (TNC): Hype, Ipara, and Hiro.

However, the three companies are still lacking requirements for compliance, according to Lizada.

“While it’s not difficult to be accredited, we need to be thorough kasi kami ang mananagot sa riding public kung hindi karapat dapat ang ilalagay naming TNC,” she said.

Grab Philippines country president Brian Cu, meanwhile, promised to work with regulatory agencies.

“We’ve taken the path of working closely with regulatory agencies and we will continue to do so. LTFRB has set the regulated fares and we want to make sure it is beneficial not only to the riding public but also the drivers who need to be compensated,” he said.

The PCC will release its decision for final interim measures before April 8, the last day of Uber's operations.