Sustainable Urban Mobility Initiative for All (SUMAI)

Grabtaxi Holdings Pte Ltd


Traffic congestion and urban pollution are major problems in most Southeast Asian cities including Phnom Penh. In response to air pollution and a constantly growing number of vehicles on the roads, with rapid economic and population growth, there is a real need for innovative sustainable traffic planning and solutions.

SUMAI is a first-of-its-kind Public Private Partnership in the Kingdom of Cambodia. Launched in 2018 by Grab and UNDP, this three-year initiative focuses on interventions to :
  • Support the efficiency of existing urban traffic and transport systems through data management
  • Reduction of urban transport Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emission through the promotion of clean vehicles and fuels, and
  • Stimulation of innovations in smart transport solutions to promote safe mobility for all


SUMAI is co-funded by Grab and UNDP for a period of three years- June 2018 to May 2021, with direct implementation by UNDP. The Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT) and Ministry of Environment (MOE) in the Kingdom of Cambodia are key government partners of this initiative with the leadership of the Senior Minister of MPWT and Minister of MoE.

At Grab, the Regional Public Affairs and Regional Social Impact team lead this project. At UNDP, it is led by its Resident Representative and the Project coordinating team. Additionally, the project is supported by other partners such as Impact Hub, People in Need, Energy Lab and Centre for Khmer Studies to deliver the following:

Public Engagement - Youth Ideation Sessions/University roadshow: The youth ideation session or university road shows was an activity that focused on the public especially youth, giving them a platform to discuss issues that concern them regarding road safety. The sessions were held in three areas of Cambodia: Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Battambang. With 170 students participating from three universities from the three areas.

Awareness Raising - Road Safety campaign with Grab: Reflective road stickers were provided to MPWT and were distributed to 11 provinces in Cambodia; for the 5th UN Global Road Safety Week (May 2019), social media and media outreach was created to help raise awareness of road safety amongst public road users.

Smart Solutions - Urban Mobility Incubator: The Urban Mobility Incubator is a space for startups and entrepreneurs who have smart solutions to improve urban mobility and transport through innovation and technology.

Testing Innovation - Testing air quality to measure air quality in Phnom Penh; Exploring the benefits and efficiency of technology to improve road safety (through Urban Mobility Incubator teams and initiatives).


In its first year, the project has
  • 1. Strengthened traffic management systems, by mapping out the various stakeholders within the transport sector in accordance with their level of relevance, including institutional positioning and recommendation for partnerships and coordination.
  • 2. Held public dialogues on the reduction of GHG emissions and the promotion of clean vehicles, focusing on cleaner vehicle alternatives between automobile companies and the transport authorities.
  • 3. Calibrated air quality systems and supplied additional devices to MoE.
  • 4. Supported MPWT with reflective stickers to help reduce road accidents.
  • 5. Launched an incubator to support startups and entrepreneurs to push forward with innovative solutions for urban mobility.
  • 6. Held youth ideation sessions to hear the voices of youth and encourage youth participation in social issues such as traffic and road accidents.


The project will continue to focus on creating an ecosystem to support the improvement of road safety and urban mobility in the country. With the current project activities, consistency and stronger impact will be enforced; creating more noise and impact toward public through awareness raising and knowledge sharing on traffic regulations/laws and road safety will facilitate the project’s overall goal to support the Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC) with “Zero Accidents”.


Since its founding a mere 7 years ago, Grab has become South East Asia’s most valuable technology company, which provides massive job opportunities for over 9 million microentrepreneurs. Through its open platform strategy, Grab works with partners to provide safe, accessible and affordable transport, food, package, grocery delivery, mobile payments, and financial services to millions of Southeast Asians.


UNDP is the United Nations’ global development network that partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in nearly 170 countries and territories, UNDP offers global perspectives