Transport Minister Wee Ka Siong has announced that the government will be lowering the minimum age limit for motorcycle-based delivery riders. While the current minimum age is set at 21, it will soon be amended to 18 so the youth can earn extra income.
Wee said that the amendment will be tabled at the next Parliament sitting, which is set to commence on 18 July. “This will allow younger Malaysians to earn extra income or possibly consider a career in the gig economy,” said the minister.
Following the reopening of the country’s economy, the p-hailing industry has seen a significant downtrend in both the number of orders and the number of motorcycle delivery riders. According to Persatuan Penghantar P-Hailing Malaysia (Penghantar), there has been a 10% drop in orders and around 25% of riders have left the gig economy, with some going back to their previous occupations.
As for ride-hailing, while demand has increased instead, the industry faces a similar problem due to a shortage of drivers. Fares have spiked during peak hours due to demand and overwhelming supply, which e-hailing giant Grab attributes to the hassle of drivers needing to pass exams and other red tapes to obtain a licence.
Wee clarified that the decision to reduce the minimum age for delivery riders is actually just one of several changes that will be included in an upcoming bill that will propose to amend the Road Transport Act 1987. Another amendment will see tour bus drivers be required to have vocational licenses, which is already mandatory for other bus drivers.
An administrative rule on temporary vehicle ownership certificates for car dealers, established in 2011, will also be codified into law. The certificate provides dealers with temporary possession of a car after it is acquired from its owner. To improve road safety, the bill would also include the recognition of data from the high-speed weighing system used for heavy vehicles and will replace manual weighing.