Parking Spaces that are Never Used

Photo: “Parking Lot" 2009 by Jeffrey Smith, Flickr.

Does it make sense that businesses with fleets of motor vehicles are required by law to rent parking spaces they never use? Contending that the answer is clearly “no,” the Transportation & Logistics Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce in Taipei has requested the authorities to eliminate a practice that serves the interest only of parking lot owners and their brokers.

The requirement affects car rental companies, express delivery enterprises, and other commercial automotive businesses. According to the Highway Act and associated regulations, such companies must show proof of having contracted for parking spaces for at least one-eighth of their total fleet of vehicles.

In its position paper in AmCham Taipei’s newly published 2017 Taiwan White Paper, the Committee notes that “due to the difficulty of obtaining sufficient legal parking spaces in metropolitan areas, it is allowed to arrange for such space outside the city where the business operations take place.” In fact, the parking spaces are often so far away from the main business location that they are never actually used.

“This system not only fails in the intended objective of ameliorating the problem of urban parking, but also adds unnecessarily to companies’ operating expenses,” says the position paper, reducing Taiwan’s attractiveness as a place to do business.

The paper also cites another regulation that it regards as unreasonable – the rule that air cargo and express delivery terminals must maintain physically separate facilities for their export and import processes. The Committee regards the requirement as outdated, considering that necessary controls can now easily be implemented through IT systems. “No other developed country is still imposing the kind of restrictions on the operation of warehouse space that Taiwan Customs continues to have in effect,” the position paper maintains. It asks the Customs administration to remove a “constraint that reduces productivity and prevents business operators from making optimum utilization of warehouse space.”

To read the full Transportation & Logistics position paper, click here.