The Department of Transportation (DOTr) announced that the SMC TPLEX Corp. (SMCTC), Metro Pacific Tollways Corp. (MPTC), and the NLEX Corp. have signed the memorandum of agreement (MOA) to jointly test the use of AutoSweep and EasyTrip radio frequency identification (RFID) cashless toll payments for the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX), the Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway (TPLEX) and on the Subic-Clark-Tarlac Expressway (SCTEX), and to determine the Read Rate Percentage.
SMCTC, a subsidiary of the San Miguel Holdings Corporation (SMHC), and concessionaire and the operator of the TPLEX, uses the AutoSweep RFID tag while the MPTC, the investment holding company of the NLEX Corp. (operator of the NLEX and SCTEX), and uses the EasyTrip RFID tag for its electronic toll collection.
The test is part of the ongoing campaign by the DOTr, through the Toll Regulatory Board (TRB), to implement a policy of toll interoperability for fast, efficient, and seamless travel of motorists along various toll roads, as the country continues to recover from the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.
Signatories to the MOA were: San Miguel Holdings Corp. (SMHC) head Lorenzo Formoso III and CFO Raoul Romulo; NLEX Chief Finance Officer Jose Luigi Bautista and Chief Finance Officer Maria Theresa Wells; and MPTC president and CEO Rodrigo Franco.
DOTr Transport Secretary Arthur Tugade, who witnessed the signing, expressed his appreciation.
Under the MOA, a steering committee will be created to implement and monitor the parties’ compliance with the agreement. An AutoSweep RFID sticker will be activated using an EasyTrip account, and an EasyTrip RFID sticker will be activated using an AutoSweep account. The test will involve 45 vehicles, composed equally of the different vehicle classifications.
The interoperability testing will be conducted for 14 consecutive days. After the test, the participants will submit their test transaction reports and dashcam video recordings to the steering committee for validation and assessment. The steering committee is given five days, from the complete submission of the data collected, to determine the read rate percentage or the system’s performance indicator when comparing RFID infrastructure.
It may be recalled that the Toll Collection Interoperability project was launched in 2017 with the signing of a MOA between the toll operators and concessionaires where they agreed to “timely, smoothly, and fairly implement the interoperability of the electronic toll collection (ETC) systems.”
Photo: Daily Tribune