LTFRB clarifies who can apply first for TNVS franchise


Drivers who want to be part of the ride-hailing industry would have to wait a little longer as the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) clarified that it would not accept new applications next month but instead process those that were still pending with the agency.

According to board member Aileen Lizada, once the LTFRB restarts the processing period for transport network vehicle service (TNVS) franchises on March 5, it will prioritize drivers who were able to file their applications before the board suspended the processing in July last year.

Lizada made the clarification on Friday, saying the board did not want to raise false hopes among the driver-applicants and inadvertently cause the number of TNVS units to swell.

She explained that if the number of pending applications would be found insufficient to address demand, that is the only time the board would accept new applications.

“But we’re not saying that drivers should already buy cars. That’s another round. We don’t want to raise false hopes. We would prioritize those on the list,” she said.

At present, transport network companies  Grab and Uber have a combined 119,468 applications pending with the LTFRB. Lizada said this number could  still go down depending on the results of an independent audit which will be conducted over the next two weeks.

The audit will classify drivers who are “dual citizens” or those who are both with Uber and Grab, those who drive compact cars, and those whose cars are still on loan.

It will also “cleanse” the list of applicants who are inactive, those who have more than three cars, or those that are foreign-owned, Lizada added.

Lizada said the final list of TNVS applicants would help them determine the ideal number for the common supply base, which is currently set at 45,700, –Jovic Yee

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