Indonesian social media has exploded this morning with the news that Gojek, Uber, Grab Bike, Grab Car and all other app-based transportation services have been banned by order of the Minister of Transportation.
The implement of the supposed ban is surat pemberitahuan, or circular letter No. UM.3012/1/21/Phb/2015 sent to the head of the National Police, and copied to the Coordinating Minister for Politics, Law and Defence, the Coordinating Minister for Economic Affairs, all Governors of Indonesia, all regional heads of police, the head of the traffic corps of the National Police, the Director General for Land Transportation, and the Chairperson of ORGANDA.
Aktualita thoughtfully posted the full text, which I am reproducing here:
If you can't read Indonesian, in short, it says that the services named in paragraph one (Uber Taxi, Go-Jek, Go-Box, Grab Bike, Grab Car, Blu-Jek, Lady-Jek) are not in line with various laws and regulations governing traffic and road transportation. The letter asks the police to take steps in accordance with the laws.
Predictably, in the face of massive popular protest, and even personal intervention by the President, the Minister of Transport has clarified that all named services can keep operating, as reported by Detik.com.
So, after one ill-conceived policy, Jakarta has had a morning full of sound and fury, ultimately signifying nothing.
These sort of extreme policy backflips are regrettable, and don't do a lot to help build Indonesia's reputation as a stable place to do business... Hopefully we see less of these going forward.
If regulation of taxis and public transport interests you, I previously wrote about it here.