While the removal of ‘unregistered’ Grab and Uber units from the roads has been stayed for the meantime, the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and Department of Transportation (DOTr) are working on reducing their numbers as a solution to traffic congestion.

MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim has warned units of Grab and Uber without the necessary permits and authorization to operation to refrain from plying the streets of Metro Manila.

“If you’re colorum, you shouldn’t be on the road,” said Lim.

According to Lim, the increase of ‘colorum’ transport network vehicle service (TNVS) is partly the cause of traffic congestion in the metro.

“Let's say 30% of those cars are in Metro Manila. But the capacity of EDSA is not expanding," added Lim.

Grab and Uber admitted to activating some 56,000 TNVS units but only 3,000 had approved franchises. That leaves some 53,000 unregistered and operating as ‘colorum’.

For its part, the DOTr plans to put a limit on the number of TNVS units that can apply for a franchise once the Technical Working Group of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) has sorted out the various concerns of Grab and Uber.

“We wanted to have compliance. Once we have the compliance then we can establish a cap. So, as we gather the data, we are studying the possibility of putting a cap on how many TNCs and TNVS are allowed to operate on roads,” said DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade.