Posted on 7 July 2016 – 11:45pm
Last updated on 8 July 2016 – 03:40pm
PETALING JAYA: Anyone with a valid driving licence wanting to drive a conventional taxi or offer a taxi service under Uber, Grab or any app-based transport network operators (TNO), may soon only be required to register with SPAD without having to sit for a Public Service Vehicle (PSV) licence test.
Currently, Malaysians above 21 years and with a valid driving licence are eligible to apply for a PSV licence from the Road Transport Department before they can drive a bus or taxi.
It is learned that SPAD has proposed to abolish the Public Service Vehicle (PSV) licence only for cabbies and e-hailing drivers from early next year.
It is learned the proposed abolishment of PSV licence for cabbies will be replaced by the SPAD driver’s card system while the training of e-hailing and taxi drivers will be done by TNO or external training consultants for individual taxi permit holders.
However, this proposal has drawn the ire of driving institute operators who may lose up to RM90 million annually.
The proposal is among 11 initiatives under the e-hailing and transformation for taxi industry models being considered by the Cabinet and has received endorsement three months ago from the Special Economic Committee chaired by the prime minister.
Malaysian Driving Industry Standards and Modernisation Council (Mapim) president Datuk Hanafi Mat Zin said they would oppose SPAD’s plan which would step into the unfamiliar territory of the commercial drivers training scheme.
“We have invested a lot in the infrastructure including improving the standard of facilitators for PSV learner drivers. Who will bear our losses?” Hanafi, who is the operator of Surfine Hitech Driving Institute in Hulu Langat, told theSun recently.
When contacted, Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai confirmed that the e-hailing working paper including the elimination of PSV has been received.
SPAD chief executive officer Mohd Azharuddin Mat Sah was not available for comment at press time despite attempts to reach him over the past three weeks.
A senior RTD officer questioned SPAD’s capability to produce efficient e-hailing and taxi drivers.
“If PSV is removed, then it is a step backwards. This will eliminate the professional enforcement,” said the officer, who also raised doubts about SPAD’s ability to curb foreigners from becoming taxi drivers and filter those with bad traffic records.
He said the PSV course fee is from RM300 to RM400 per person with about 400 drivers enrolling annually at Surfine.
Source : http://www.thesundaily.my/news/1890531