Maldives to launch delayed bike taxi service next month

Four new companies have expressed interest to introduce the long delayed bike taxi service in the Maldives next month, economic ministry said Wednesday.

Weeks before the service was scheduled to be launched, two companies that were originally slated to the commence the service had refused citing strict regulation.

One of the companies, Ride Maldives had said it would be unable to meet the safety requirements under the regulation compiled by the economic ministry.

Economic ministry had a made a fresh announcement to seek private parties to introduce bike taxi service in the archipelago.

The ministry's national maritime consultant Mohamed Imthiyaz said four companies had expressed interest and had been asked to submit proposals by December 20.

"According to the regulation bike taxi service would be handled by the transport authority. The next step would be to review the proposals of the four companies. Everything must go in accordance with the bike taxi regulation," Imthiyaz explained.

Economic Ministry had originally issued licenses to Ride Maldives Pvt Ltd and Wheel MV Pvt Ltd for the service.

The regulation states that only motorbikes registered to a taxi company with a license provided by the government can give service, and that all riders must have a valid drivers license.

Additional guidelines include the wearing of helmets and other safety precautions, communicating with the passengers in a respectable way.

No passenger can be denied a ride without a valid reason.