Business

Bike-hailing firms to start test runs in M’sia from Jan 2020

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia will allow motorcycle-hailing firms such as Indonesia's Gojek and local start-up Dego Ride to start operations on a limited scale from January next year.

Gojek and Dego Ride will start operating based on a proof-of-concept basis to measure demand for the service over six months, Transport Minister Anthony Loke Siew Fook said.

"Bike hailing will be an important component in providing a comprehensive public transport system, as a mode for first- and last-mile connectivity," Mr Loke told Parliament.

The pilot project would be limited to the Klang Valley, Malaysia's most developed region and where the capital Kuala Lumpur is located, although the government would consider expanding it to other areas if there was demand.

The six-month, proof-of-concept pilot programme would allow the government and participating firms to gather data and evaluate demand, while the government works on drafting legislation to govern bike-hailing.

"Bike-hailing will be subject to similar regulations as laid out for e-hailing," the minister said, referring to existing ride-hailing operations by companies such as Grab.

Gojek's impending entry into Malaysia will likely pose the biggest challenge to Grab, which took the lion's share of the nation's e-hailing market after it bought over Uber Technology operations in South-east Asia last year. - REUTERS

BUSINESS & FINANCE