Vietnamese court adjourns Vinasun-Grab lawsuit due to lack of evidence

Hanoi, Vietnam. Photo by Florian Wehde on Unsplash

A verdict on Vietnamese taxi company Vinasun’s VND41 billion ($1.8-million) lawsuit against ride-hailing company Grab has been adjourned until November 22 due to lack of concrete evidence from the local transport company.

The verdict was earlier expected to be announced on Monday.

“We are basically pleased with the outcome today and believe that the judgment committee of the People’s Court of Ho Chi Minh City has made the right decision to adjourn the case,” Jerry Lim, Grab’s country head for Vietnam, said in a statement.

The prosecutor had last week recommended that Grab be treated as a taxi operator and compensate Vinasun for the business losses incurred between January 2016 and June 2017.

This is the third time the court case has been adjourned on account of lack of evidence. The appointed assessor, Cuu Long Valuation Inspection Company, was absent from the hearing sessions.

At the latest hearing on October 29, the judgment committee said there was a combination of reasons for Vinasun’s loss, and the assessment for the case was complicated. With the appointed assessor not present during the hearing, the decision to delay the verdict was taken.

“It is necessary to verify and supplement the documents and evidence related to the assessment in order to solve the case,” the judgment committee said on Monday.

Grab had hired Grant Thornton to conduct its own assessment, which pointed out many flaws in Cuu Long’s work.

Lim called Vinasun’s lawsuit as a clear attempt to “abuse the court process”.

“Traditional companies should constantly innovate through technology to remain relevant and competitive, and not take the easy way out by suing its competitor to court whilst maintaining the status quo,” he said.

Grab recently partnered with southern Bac Lieu-based Mekong Taxi to launch GrabTaxi in the province. The partnership will bring the service to other provinces in the south-west region.

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Vietnamese prosecutor recommends Grab be treated as taxi service