Grab to question antitrust body's 'maximum' fines

Gillan Ropero, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jan 25 2019 11:01 PM | Updated as of Jan 26 2019 03:43 AM

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MANILA - Ride-hailing firm Grab on Friday said it will not pay the P6.5 million fine of the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC), and asked why it was fined "at the maximum" for "trivial items" and for failing to meet the antitrust body's deadlines.

The PCC earlier announced it imposed the fine on Grab for failing to submit correct and sufficient data needed for price monitoring.

Grab Philippines country manager Brian Cu said there were no violations but admitted there were delays in the firm's submission of data to the PCC.

"The way we understood the fining of the PCC was really just on certain data lapses in which they said there were delays in us submitting the data," Cu told ANC.

"When it comes to pricing and quality, based on our discussion and the data we submitted, we feel we met the requirements the PCC set forth and we did not violate any of the pricing and quality metrics that they set forth."

Cu said the firm will file a motion for reconsideration on the penalty, which will also seek an explanation for the maximum fines.

"Trivial items such as splitting columns became a point of imposing a fine on us, that’s why we’re appealing the fines. We don’t know why 3 out of 4 of the claimed violations are being fined at the maximum of what the PCC fines are set at," he said.

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"Most of the violations were fined at the maximum P2 million, which we need to understand why it was set at the maximum."

Cu said the firm's late submission was to "ensure that the data we submitted was the correct one and in the format they wanted."

He earlier explained Grab was “working under very limited timelines” to meet the deadline given its huge volumes of data."

With ample time, Grab will be able to “reconcile” its data structure with the monitoring trustee, Cu said.

“We assure our passengers that we are charging fares within the range as allowed by the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB),” he said in a statement.