Grab has signed an agreement to develop new smart transportation with authorities in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s largest metropolitan area. The city is also where Grab Vietnam is headquartered.
Accordingly, Grab will share data about trips to support the city’s Ministry of Transport traffic database in analyzing and forecasting traffic conditions on various routes. The pilot usage of electric motorbikes to transport passengers is set to take place before the end of 2019 in some downtown areas and for a potential city-wide roll-out in 2020. Additionally, Grab and ministry officials will study solutions to integrate Grab Bike or Grab Car with public transportation.
Tran Quang Lam, director of the Ministry of Transport, said the city recognizes the potential to leverage Grab’s platform in the future, allowing residents to access information about bus or metro routes in the city via the Grab app.
Aside from this development, Grab has been aggressively pushing to implement various initiatives in Vietnam. It recently began the pilot of an on-demand bus service program and launched GrabKitchen in the country. These moves were alluded to during its announcement of a USD 500 million investment for Vietnam back in August.
Grab’s major investor SoftBank also met with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc in Tokyo in October to show goodwill and solidify Grab’s foothold in the country. Next month, Prime Minister Phuc is expected to approve the latest draft of a decree on automobile transportation, which will legalize ride-hailing services (for cars) after a pilot phase of nearly four years.