Singapore proposes fines on Grab, Uber, says merger harms competition
Singapore’s anti-trust body proposed fines on ride-hailing firms Grab and Uber, provisionally finding that their merger had reduced competition and suggesting remedies such as the sale of their car-leasing businesses.
The Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (CCCS) also warned that it may require the companies to unwind the merger depending on whether the remedies are successful but added a reversal may not be feasible, citing Uber’s exit from the market after the deal.
Uber sold its Southeast Asian business to bigger regional rival Grab in March in exchange for a stake in the Singapore-based firm, following similar deals by the US firm in China and Russia.
But the deal has invited regulatory scrutiny in the region, with the CCCS, in a rare move, launching a probe, days after the transaction was announced.
The commission said in a statement on Thursday it proposed the fines because Uber and Grab carried out the transaction despite having anticipated potential competition concerns, leading to lesser competition in the sector in Singapore.