PUTRAJAYA: The food delivery or p-hailing sector will be officially placed under the Transport Ministry's purview after amendments to the law are made, says Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.
The Transport Minister said at present, the ministry has only managed and regulated the e-hailing industry since 2019, but this does not cover food delivery riders.
"On Aug 5, the Cabinet had given the green light for the Transport Ministry and its agencies, namely the Land Public Transport Agency (APAD), the Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board (LPKP) of Sabah and Sarawak to regulate the goods delivery business, especially those using motorcycles (p-hailing service).
"For the purposes of regulation, the Cabinet has agreed that amendments be made to the Road Transport Act 1987, the Commercial Vehicle Licensing Board Act 1987 and the Land Public Transport Act 2010," he told a press conference on Monday (Aug 8) after a dialogue with the p-hailing industry players here.
He said the amendments are expected to be tabled at the next Parliament session.
Last week, frustrated delivery riders in the country held a one-day strike to protest their plight such as low delivery fees.
Following the protest, a meeting was organised between the Transport Ministry, several delivery riders associations and vendors.
"In the dialogue session with p-hailing riders, ehailing drivers as well as ehailing operators (EHOs) today, I heard the issues raised by all parties, said Dr Wee.
"I noticed that there is a lack of communication on both sides. I call on EHOs to constantly engage with the riders and their drivers to give a better understanding of company policies that have been implemented.
"Most importantly, I want the welfare of workers in the gig economy sector to always be prioritised because they are the driving force behind the country's business and economy.
"They play a huge role to the public, sacrificing themselves by enduring both rain and heat to fulfil their responsibilities and provide services.
"At the same time, we need to ensure EHOs can continue to operate and conduct business in a healthy manner, because it is a source of income for p-hailing riders and e-hailing drivers.
"The same is true of the interests of the public as consumers. If it involves cost or fares, it must be thoroughly researched and whatever price changes cannot be burdenful to the user," said Dr Wee.
Among the groups present at the dialogue were the Malaysian P-Hailing Riders Association (Penghantar), Malaysia Food Delivery Association, Malaysian E-hailing Industry Workers' Welfare Association, Grab Drivers Malaysia Association, Perak Motorcycle Delivery Service Welfare Association and others.