Vietnam removes roof-sign requirement for ride-hailing providers

Photo: Quoc Huy Tran/Unsplash

Vietnam has removed a requirement for ride-hailing service providers to install roof-signs (or lightboxes) in the latest draft of amended regulations for transport companies.

The transport ministry has instead proposed that ride-hailing cars have a fixed reflective decal carrying the phrase “contracted car” on the right side of their windshields.

The regulations still require ride-hailing firms to store the entire history of transactions on their platforms for at least two years, report information about all car drivers and transport companies using the ride-hailing app to authorities and ensure customers’ data privacy.

A previous draft of the new regulation for transportation businesses had sought to restrict the advantages enjoyed by the ride-hailing industry operating under a pilot programme.

The easing of the proposed regulation comes after Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc asked the transport ministry to remove unnecessary barriers for tech businesses in the country. The PM recently also approved a national project to boost the development of the sharing economy in the country.

Vietnam’s ride-hailing market, which is currently dominated by Grab, has witnessed the rise of many local firms and the entry of new regional players.

Most recently, Viettel Post, the post and delivery services arm of Vietnam’s largest telco Viettel Group, officially threw its hat into the ride-hailing ring with the launch of its MyGo car and bike-hailing and delivery services.

Be Group, which launched its operations last year, is set to expand its operations with the launch of delivery services for enterprise and individual customers.

Among regional players, Singapore-based tech firm Mass Vehicle Ledger (MLV) launched its ride-hailing app TADA in Ho Chi Minh City this January. The launch of its services in Vietnam came after a foray into the Cambodian market in December as part of a regional expansion plan.