Press Release
March 16, 2021


Sen. Grace Poe conducted a hearing on the Public Utility Vehicle Modernization Program (PUVMP) to hear both sides of concerns coming from the stakeholders of the transportation sector and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB).

"Lagi kong sinasabi ito tuwing mga drayber ang pinag-uusapan: Gusto nating maging ligtas ang ating mga daan at pampublikong sasakyan. Ngunit, ika nga nila - there are two sides to every story and as policymakers, we are expected to consider both," Poe said.

The hearing is a gentle reminder that any form of phaseout of any PUV is prohibited under the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act, said Poe.

According to LTFRB Chair Martin Delgra, a total of 2,589 units have been modernized as of Dec. 2020, an 82.2-percent increase compared to the same time last year despite the pandemic. On the other hand, a total of 81,092 units have been consolidated as of March 5, 2021.

"My takeaway from the whole presentation is that there's a marked improvement of those who are willing to join, pero hindi natin maipagkakailang marami pa ring napag-iiwanan," stressed Poe.

Data shows that there will be around a hundred thousand PUV drivers and operators who will be displaced as a result of the PUVMP, but Delgra clarified that operators who have yet to consolidate in time for the March 31 deadline will not be forced to phase out but are given time to consolidate within the year.

"In order to truly heal and recover as one, we need to lift unnecessary burdens caused by deadlines and requirements that could not possibly be met by hundreds of thousands of PUV operators," said Poe.

The key components of the PUVMP include Local Public Transport Route Planning (LPTRP) where local government units are required to prepare their own LPTRP that will be implemented in their selective localities, route rationalization that aims to address operational inefficiencies and worsening of traffic conditions, fleet modernization, industry consolidation, and social support mechanisms.

Poe asked stakeholders to submit their requests and concerns to her office and the LTFRB for further study and consideration and asked the agency to submit the step-by-step procedure to apply for a cooperative to make sure it's compliant to the Anti-Red Tape Act.

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