BY LOW HAN SHAUN
Published: 16 December 2015 2:52 PM
Big Blue Capital Sdn Bhd is taking ride-sharing service startups, Uber and GrabCar to court for illegally picking up passengers in its territory and using drivers and vehicles not approved by the Land Public Transport Commission (SPAD).
Datuk Shamsubahrin Ismail, owner and adviser of the company which manages taxi services at Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre (KLCC), said the issue would be discussed in depth and brought to court in the next two weeks.
“We are suing them for trespassing, conducting illegal activities in our area, and allowing vehicles and drivers not approved by SPAD to pick up passengers,” he said in a press conference at Wisma Central in Jalan Ampang, Kuala Lumpur today.
He said there would not have been a problem if Uber and GrabCar had worked with his company and used its taxis instead.
“We let all taxis operate here (KLCC) but first they must register with us for the record in case anything happens. Secondly, they must use the meter. That is all,” he said.
He also said taxi passengers should not trade safety for savings in fares as taxi drivers used the meter and kept their vehicles in tiptop condition.
“The public cannot think cheap all the time. You come to our counter, you want safety for your family, you have to pay for it. But if you don’t want to have safety, you have to go elsewhere,” he said.
Shamsubahrin said under the contract between Big Blue Capital Sdn Bhd and KLCC, taxis were required to adhere to standards set by the SPAD and Puspakom, unlike Uber and GrabCar services.
“We are required to make sure that all registered budget and executive taxis are Puspakom certified roadworthy with valid road tax, taxi permit, insurance and taxi licence. These are not required of Uber,” he said.
Meanwhile, Shamsubahrin said the recent Express Rail Link (ERL) fare hike meant that more would opt for taxis instead.
“The Blue Taxi taxi rate is RM120 for a trip from KLCC to the airport, regardless of the number of passengers. If four people were to take the ERL, the fares would come up to RM220,” he said.
He said there were plans to introduce a package rate for those travelling in a group from KLCC to the airports next year.
“Our competition now is no longer ERL, we are now discussing a package – RM130 one-way from KLCC to KLIA or KLIA 2,” he said
Big Blue Capital Sdn Bhd, formerly known as Awana Sutera Travel and Tours Sdn Bhd, recently sued SPAD for failing in its duty to take action against illegal ride-sharing services.
Shamsubahrin said SPAD should be stripped of its authority to regulate taxi services and made to focus on train and bus services instead. – December 16, 2015.