ITU Blog: Grab’s proactive approach to regulatory affairs

Innovation is often associated with disruption when new ways of operating upset the status quo. Consequently, the timing of policy and regulation needs to be carefully aligned with the pace of innovation and growth. As such, governments are increasingly embarking on consultations with private businesses and other stakeholders when introducing or reviewing innovation policies that seek to support the domestic information and communication technology (ICT) sector and increase their competitiveness in the global digital economy. But ICT startups often view government actions as complicating their efforts to move quickly to scale their businesses in a cost-effective manner.

Grab, a Southeast Asia-based ride-hailing company, has worked preemptively with governments to help create balanced polices to support the local transport app industry. In doing so, Grab has cultivated a mutually beneficial relationship: Grab equips regulators with industry insights, ensuring that policymaking can occur in a timely manner. This approach has helped the company experience a period of rapid growth and expand into six new markets across Southeast Asia, showing that maintaining a positive relationship with government policy makers and regulators can and does pay off.

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