Grab Car has become the leading e-hailing service in South East Asia by beating and buying over their main rivals Uber last year, thus leaving a huge mark all across SEA. While they have been making waves in the market, a new law might just cut their number of drivers by half.
The 12th of July this year will be the deadline for all e-hailing drivers to get their Public Service Vehicle (PSV) license, which is the same license that taxi drivers are required to have in order to operate their services. The Minister of Transportation, Anthony Loke, had announced this measure last November and opened the mandatory license to e-hailing drivers in January. It is now June and with only a month away, industry experts are predicting that e-hailing services in Malaysia, including Grab, will lose 50% of its drivers since it was reported that most have not applied for this license and the training that comes with it.
To support their drivers, Grab subsidises MYR 50 for the PSV training as well as MYR 70 for the required car inspection, with the PSV fees totalling to MYR 200. But with a third of Grab car’s 200,000 drivers being part-timers, the prediction could actually become a reality.
As interviewed by The Star, Malaysian E-hailing Drivers Association president Daryl Chong has said that he supported the regulation of the e-hailing industry, but felt that most part-time drivers would not be willing to cash out to pay for the PSV fees. In the same interview, Grab Drivers Malaysia Association president Arif Asyraf Ali also stated that many drivers did not want the hassle of complying with the PSV requirements.
Of course, other e-hailing services like Mula and Dacsee will also be affected by this new requirement, though none of them will be as affected as much as Grab. We shall see next month on how much the PSV license could actually change Malaysia’s e-hailing landscape.