Taxis will be banned from roaming streets in Saudi Arabia under new regulations released by the transport ministry.

Instead taxi drivers will wait at dedicated centres for passengers to place phone calls requesting their services, local Arabic daily Al Madinah has reported.

The move aims to reduce traffic jams and to provide better documented services.

Drivers who fail to comply with the new rules will be made to pay fines of up to SR 5,000.

The new regime will track the movements, itinerary, speed and stops of the taxis, the daily said on Thursday.

Drivers who do not fix the new tracking devises will have to pay fines of SR 2,000 on their first offence. They would pay higher fines and eventually lose their permit if they were caught again.

All calls requesting the taxi services will be recorded and kept for at least six months.

Drivers will be trained on the use of the new devices, the daily said.

No date to start the implementation of the new system was given.