‘Ride shares help MRT service’

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has achieved another major public transport milestone with the legalisation of e-hailing services following the recent launch of the first MRT line, said Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai.

“We’re moving into the digital era. We’re confident of more efficient services with the legalisation of e-hailing services,” he told reporters after opening the 45th annual gene­ral meeting of the Young Malaysians Movement at Vivatel here.

“The MRT is another important milestone for the country.

“I’m confident that our public transport will be further enhanced with these new services and modes,” he added, when commenting on the amendments to the Land Public Transport Act 2010 and Commercial Vehicles Licensing Board Act 1987 passed by the Dewan Rakyat on Thursday.

The amendments, once gazetted, make it compulsory for e-hailing drivers under providers like Uber and Grab to go for medical check-ups and periodic vehicle inspections, and have insurance policies like regular taxi drivers.

The amendments also protect e-hailing drivers from assault or hindrance when working.

Liow said e-hailing drivers provide last-mile transportation like taxis and buses, which is important to help Malaysia achieve its target of 40% public transport modal share by 2030.

He added that the country was on track to meet the target with the construction of more rail lines.

He said the second and third MRT lines should be completed by 2022 and 2027 while the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail and the East Coast Rail Link should be ready by 2023 and 2025.