Shared mobility App regulations

Applications are constantly being developed to provide an easy to use allocation of spared transport in cities. In order to provide regulatory frameworks which ensures the success of their integration into the existing transport systems, the International Transport Forum (ITF) has recently published a report named the App-Based Ride and Taxi Services: Principles for Regulation.

The reports key findings include clues to the popularity of commercial transport apps which include its availability, transparency and flexibility it offers. It also states basic regulation concerns such as ensuring public safety as well as tax compliance. The four principles that should inform thinking around regulatory reform of for-hire passenger transport according to such report are:

  1. Focus on the needs of consumers and society: Policy should enable innovations that contribute to policy objectives such as equitable access, safety, consumer welfare and sustainability. This will likely entail lightening market entry controls and fares regulation for dispatched taxi services.
  2. Keep the regulatory framework simple and uniform: Regulators should avoid creating different categories of providers. If differentiations are required, these should be made explicit, substantiated and frequently reviewed.
  3. Chose innovative and flexible approaches to regulation: New technology and better data allow targeted oversight of for-hire services. Automated fare data collection for tax purposes, on-board monitoring of vehicle condition, driver behaviour etc. enable better oversight and delivery on policy goals.
  4. Use data-led regulation to improve benefits for all: Offer operators a choice between a light and a more burdensome regulatory regime, in return for sharing data that can be used to create benefits for society at large.

Download the report for free at:

Image: International Transport Forum

The International Transport Forum is an intergovernmental organisation with 57 member countries. It acts as a think tank for transport policy and organises the Annual Summit of transport ministers. ITF is the only global body that covers all transport modes. The ITF is administratively integrated with the OECD, yet politically autonomous.