LTFRB to fully implement PUVMP by January 1, 2024

The government is standing firm on its commitment to modernize public transportation.

President Marcos recently declared that there will be no extension on the deadline for the consolidation of PUV operators beyond December 31, 2023, and the Department of Transportation (DOTr) and Land Transportation Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB) echoed that in their latest statement released to the media.

PUV Modernization Program deadline etched in stone for December 31, 2023 image

The Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP) will be fully implemented on January 1, 2024 with the goal of easing the plight of millions of commuters with better, cleaner, and safer means of public transportation. There has been resistance from a number of transport groups on the basis of cost, among others.

PUV Modernization Program deadline etched in stone for December 31, 2023 image

The Department of Transporation (DOTr) launched the PUVMP in 2017 under the Duterte administration to improve the public transport system by introducing cleaner, safer, efficient, and better means of public transportation to replace dilapidated, unsafe, inefficient, and smoke-belching jeepneys. The program also intended to rationalize public transportation routes to ensure a more efficient flow of PUVs. It also offered fiscal incentives to stakeholders that will participate in the program.

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) also stated that they will coordinate with local government units to ensure that the public will have adequate means of transportation.

The full statement released to the media is as follows:

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), in collaboration with the Office of Transportation Cooperatives (OTC) and other government agencies, has laid out the necessary measures in preparation for the full implementation of the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP) after the December 31, 2023 deadline for consolidation.

Focus of LTFRB under the PUVMP is the welfare of commuters so that come January 1st, 2024, a sufficient number of PUVs are expected to continue plying their routes, considering the ongoing application for consolidation of numerous transport groups with LTFRB and OTC, trying to beat the deadline.

In compliance with the directive of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. to expedite the implementation of the much-delayed PUVMP, the LTFRB is coordinating with local government units (LGUs), through the Secretary of Interior and Local Government, for the next phase of the program – route rationalization.

LGUs will also assist the LTFRB and DOTr after the December 31, 2023 deadline in the implementation of PUVMP within their jurisdiction particularly ensuring the adequate supply of PUV services.

After December 31, 2023, all consolidated units will continue to operate on their existing routers and will be allowed to apply for Special Permits on routes without consolidation pursuant to LTFRB MC No. 2023-052.

Data shows that in the National Capital Region alone, all major routes or thoroughfares are being operated by consolidated transport groups; while secondary routes without consolidation entities will be served by other modes of Public Transport.

The LTFRB will provide updated data with respect to the nationwide consolidation efforts on Dec. 29, 2023.