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House resolution filed to investigate Grab charges

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A LEGISLATOR has filed a resolution seeking to conduct an investigation on the alleged illegal charges being imposed by car-hailing firm Grab on customers.

Quezon City 2nd District Rep. Precious Hipolito Castelo filed House Resolution 623 last December 17 to look into whether or not the existing penalty mechanism contained in the “Undertaking” and “Extended Undertaking” documents is sufficient to deter Grab in charging “excessive” fares.

The Extended Undertaking includes a set of voluntary commitments by Grab to regulate prices and improve service quality “as a continuing condition for the antitrust authority’s clearance of Grab’s acquisition of Uber in the Philippines” last 2018.

The Philippine Competition Commission (PCC), in its Decision No. 33-M-012, ruled that it is necessary to extend and amend the Undertaking.

“Despite the commitment of Grab to comply with its obligations expressed in the Undertaking and Extended Undertaking, it cannot be denied that Grab continues to defy and violate its commitments to regulate prices and improve service quality,” part of the resolution read.

Last Dec. 18, the PCC imposed a fine of P14.5 million for Grab’s “extraordinary deviation on its pricing commitment” and P2 million for exceeding driver cancellations at 7.76%, higher than the committed 5%.

Grab was ordered to refund its passengers through their accounts on the app’s online wallet, GrabPay, “within a period of 60 days from receipt of the order” which was released on November 14. — Genshen L. Espedido

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