Ofo faces suspension after breaching regulatory requirements: LTA

Ofo faces suspension after breaching regulatory requirements: LTA

Ofo bike-sharing bicycles are pictured in Singapore
Ofo bike-sharing bicycles are pictured in Singapore, Aug 29, 2017. (Photo: Reuters/Edgar Su)

SINGAPORE: Bike-sharing firm Ofo has to meet all regulatory requirements by Feb 13 or face suspension, the Land Transport Authority (LTA) said in a statement on Tuesday (Jan 15).

According to LTA, Ofo has "breached multiple regulatory requirements" despite being given "an ample preparation period" for compliance.

Ofo did not reduce its bicycle fleet to the stipulated maximum fleet size of 10,000, despite multiple warnings and regulatory action taken against them. 

READ: LTA to take action against ofo for having too many bicycles

In addition, Ofo did not implement the QR-code parking system by Jan 14, LTA said.

Bike-sharing companies are now required to ensure that shared bicycles are parked within designated areas by using a QR-code system, which kicked in on Monday.

"We view these as serious breaches of critical requirements. Therefore Ofo must meet all regulatory requirements by Feb 13, 2019, failing which LTA intends to suspend Ofo’s licence," said LTA.

Another bike-sharing operator, Qiqi Zhixiang, had appealed to LTA to delay the deployment of their bicycles until Jan 1, 2019.

"To date, Qiqi has failed to deploy bicycles for hire, which is a breach of the licence requirements," said an LTA spokesman.

"LTA intends to impose a financial penalty for this breach and will continue to take regulatory action should Qiqi not take remedial action."

CASH FLOW PROBLEMS

China-based Ofo has been facing cash flow problems and millions of users have asked for their deposits back.

In December, Ofo chief executive Dai Wei said it was battling "immense" cash flow problems and disbanding the firm has been considered as an option.

READ: CASE warns Ofo Singapore as users complain of fewer bikes

In Singapore, at least two of Ofo’s former logistic vendors have said the firm owes them around S$700,000 for their services. 

The contracts of hundreds of Ofo Singapore employees were also terminated in November last year. 

Employees said Ofo still owed them thousands of dollars in claims, and they have lodged complaints with the Tripartite Alliance for Dispute Management.

Source: CNA/ic(hm)

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