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Govt’s tender for 10 company licences to operate taxis receives 40 bids

2023-11-24 03:08     BY Tony Wong    Comment:0

  Up to 500 cabs up for grabs


    The Transport Bureau (DSAT) said in a statement that by the submission deadline of 5 p.m. yesterday, it had received a total of 40 bids for its public tender for the granting of 10 eight-year company licences each of which will be allowed to operate up to 50 common taxis.

DSAT officials are scheduled to unseal the submitted bids at the DSAT headquarters on Estrada de D. Maria II today.

The granting of the 10 company licences will enable up to 500 new taxis to serve the city.

Common taxis – as opposed to special radio taxis – are colloquially known as “black taxis” (“hak dik” in Cantonese).

The tender for the 10 licences was launched on October 25.

According to the current law regulating the city’s taxi sector, which took effect in June 2019, only companies are allowed to bid for a licence to operate common taxis.

Before the current taxi law came into force, common taxi-vehicle licences were granted to individuals.

According to the current taxi law, a single company is only allowed to hold up to 300 taxi-vehicle licences. A company must have a minimum capital of five million patacas to bid for a licence to operate common taxis. Only locally-registered companies are allowed to bid for the licences.

The last time the government launched a public tender to grant new common taxi-vehicle licences to individuals was in 2018, when 100 new licences valid for eight years were bid for.

The ongoing bidding process for the 10 licences, which was launched last month, is the first tender since the current taxi law took effect in 2019, according to which common taxi licences are now granted to companies instead of individuals.

The ongoing public tender will grant new licences valid for eight years to 10 companies to operate common taxis. Each winner can apply to operate up to 50 taxis.

Consequently, the public tender will grant up to 500 new common taxi-vehicle licences.

For the ongoing tender, each company can only bid for one taxi-operating licence comprising up to 50 taxis. The minimum bid is set at 2.5 million patacas. Each bidder is required to pay a deposit of 3.5 million patacas.

The session unsealing the 40 submitted bids will be held at the meeting room on the fifth floor of the DSAT headquarters at 10 a.m. today.

The 40 bids will be assessed based on three criteria, namely the proposed price accounting for 40 percent of the scores, the proposed plan of how to run its fleet of taxis accounting for 50 percent, and the proposed kinds of vehicles accounting for 10 percent.

Before the current taxi law took effect – when common taxi-vehicle licences were granted to individuals, those who proposed the highest bids were granted a licence during a public tender.

According to the current taxi law, a single company, regardless of those holding only one taxi-operating licence or those holding more than one, is only allowed to hold a maximum of 300 taxi-vehicle licences in total.

At the end of the last quarter, according to DSAT data, Macau had a total of 1,566 taxis, comprising 1,266 black taxis and 300 special radio taxis.

The government has said that it had decided to launch the ongoing public tender in view of the fact that more and more eight-year-validity common taxi-vehicle licences have gradually expired over the past few years. The government has said that the tender aims to “tackle” the city’s ongoing demand for taxi services.

The government has pointed out that the city had nearly 1,900 taxis, including 300 special radio taxis, at its peak a few years ago.

According to DSAT data, the city’s number of black taxis further dropped from 1,322 in this year’s second quarter to 1,266 in the last quarter. 


Taxis wait for passengers at the taxi rank outside Hotel Lisboa last night. – Photo: Tony Wong


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