TRB Pushes Adoption Of E-Wallets

MANILA, Philippines - The Toll Regulatory Board (TRB) has urged operators of toll roads to follow the Cavite Expressway (Cavitex) in adapting the use of electronic-wallets for their cashless toll collection systems.

TRB Executive Director Edmund Reyes said the e-tap technology that Cavitex is set to implement next week is faster than cash payment like the existing EC tag and E-Pass technology, but the e-tap card that motorists will buy to avail of the technology is more affordable than the transponder gadgets used for the existing technology.

Reyes said that as soon as all toll operators adapt the e-tag technology in their toll collection system, they can already interoperate, similar to the banks with automated teller machines.

''Even if toll operators have different providers, an independent clearing house, which collects the toll and distributes the payment to its members like Megalink or Bancnet to its member-banks, will be needed to interoperate,'' he said.

Earlier last week, the Cavitex Infrastructure Corporation (CIC) and its technology supplier Malaysian-based RTS Technology Sdn Bhd presented the e-tap card, ahead of the technology's pilot launching on July 16.

The e-tap card is a reloadable electronic purse/wallet that uses a contactless technology similar to a credit card.

The motorist will only tap the e-tap card in readers installed at dedicated lanes at toll plazas.

A beep sound will confirm that the toll value was deducted to the e-tap stored value card.

The reader will show the card's load balance as it activates the gate barrier to let the motorist pass.

CIC president Andrew Deyto said motorists normally spend at least eight seconds in paying for cash. But transaction with e-tap card will only entail two to three seconds.

''This facility is expected to enhance the speed of paying at the toll ways and is also very convenient because motorists are no longer needed to prepare for small change or wait in queue at the cash lane to complete the transaction,'' he said.

Deyto said the e-tap card is also more affordable compared to the gadget that motorists have to buy to use e-pass or EC tag in other expressways.

He said the e-tap card will cost between P15 to P25 and can eventually be made available for free.

Deyto said they will issue 3,000 pieces of e-tag cards for free to Cavitex users on July 16, for the pilot launching of the technology.

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