Under this project, GrabTaxi will be the first and only unit allowed to provide e-contract based cars with fewer than nine seats. Other commercial passenger transport firms will require a contract in order to participate in the project.
The GrabCar pilot project, which was submitted to the Ministry of Transport (MoT) in July 2015 and approved by the prime minister in October, will be carried out in five cities and provinces of Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Danang, Khanh Hoa and Quang Ninh from January 2016 to January 2018.
The need to develop information technology (IT) being applied to transportation services in Vietnam has become more evident lately as LiveTaxi, TaxiNavi, Ahamove and Vinasun have already moved to replicate GrabTaxi's success by creating proprietary e-contract apps. However, these software applications have revealed several shortcomings and inconsistencies with current regulations on trading and business conditions for automobile transportation services.
This GrabCar project is considered an important practical basis for fine-tuning the legal regulations related to IT services supporting commercial automobile transportation operations, particularly the state management of contract-based transportation and tourist transportation services.
"The project aims to make transport operations more transparent. The service connects passengers to companies that provide transport services quickly and conveniently. It will also help lower fares, curb traffic jams, save energy and cut down on pollution," said Khuat Viet Hung, vice chairman of the Vietnam National Safety Traffic Committee.
Sharing a similar view, Emily Thu Do, marketing director of GrabTaxi Co. Ltd., the GrabCar application provider, added that, "This MoT decision not only facilitates participating entities but also shows the determination of the ministry to improve the business environment and enhance the competitiveness of businesses.”
Established in Malaysia in 2011 with the name MyTeksi, GrabTaxi headquarters is based in Singapore and operates in 26 cities across six ASEAN countries. In Vietnam, the service has been offered in Ho Chi Minh City since February 2014, in Hanoi since May 2014 and in Danang since June 2015.