The Competition Commission of Singapore (CCS) said yesterday it plans to do a further in-depth assessment of the tie-up between the city-state's top taxi operator, ComfortDelGro, and Uber, after an initial review.
The agency said it had requested further information from both parties to be submitted by March 5, after which it will assess whether their tie-up infringes Singapore's competition laws.
“CCS is unable to conclusively determine that competition issues will not arise, and has identified certain issues that may affect competition within the relevant markets that require further in-depth assessment,” a statement said.
The commission asked whether the uberFLASH service involves any coordination of pricing between competitors, whether flat-fare service offered by CDG pre-collaboration with no surge pricing will continue to be available for commuters, whether taxi and chauffeured private hire car drivers are able to take jobs from multiple ride-hailing platforms if they wish to and whether the variety of payment options for commuters will be reduced, among others.
ComfortDelGro had said in December 2017 it would buy a 51 per cent stake in a unit of Uber that runs a fleet of private hire vehicles, as the companies seek to bridge the gap with dominant ride-hailing firm Grab.
To proceed with assessing the parties’ notification of the proposed collaboration, CCS has requested the parties to submit further information, unless they are able to address the competition issues identified. CCS claimed it will proceed with an in-depth assessment which includes inviting public feedback and views.
CCS is a statutory board established under the Competition Act (Chapter 50B) that comes under the purview of the Ministry of Trade and Industry to investigate alleged anti-competitive activities, determine if such activities infringe the Act and impose suitable remedies, directions and financial penalties.