Competing taxi apps boosted by Uber's licencing issues

Posted September 29, 2017

British Prime Minister Theresa May tells the BBC that the London transport regulator's block of Uber's (Private:UBER) license renewal was "disproportionate".

'I want to see a level playing field.

"Trying to impose on us the same thing that is now done in the old taxi industry, I don't think it will help us to move forward", he said Quebec's government said it would not back down.

He confirmed Uber would appeal against the decision on behalf of Londoners, and he accepted the service needs to change in order to meet legislation.

Uber has said it will appeal within a 21-day deadline, and it will be allowed to continue operating until the legal process is exhausted.

Transport for London (TfL), which regulates and operates the transport network in one of the world's richest cities, stunned the taxi-app firm last week when it said it would not renew its licence after the end of September.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan - the first Muslim mayor of any major western city - is now in a stand-off with the mobile app based cab company Uber for the last one week.

Transport for London (TfL) chose to refrain from issuing Uber with a private hire operator licence last week which means it will no longer be able to operate legally in London. London's police force has accused the firm of not reporting six sexual assaults promptly past year, including one case in which the driver continued to work and then attacked another passenger.

London is a critical global market for Uber, which could encourage the company to make regulatory concessions to remain on the streets, Orcutt said.

Since TfL's announcement, more than 817,000 people have signed a Change.org petition - launched by Uber - to reverse the decision.

TfL said it has concluded that "Uber London Limited is not fit and proper to hold a private hire operator licence".

A spokesman for Mr Khan said: 'Sadiq has every sympathy with customers and drivers of Uber, but is clear that any anger must be directed at Uber itself. The appeal comes less than a week after Uber heard it would lose its London license. Everyone knows that the draconian ban is really about politics, urged on by the unions and aggrieved black cab drivers. TfL ensures that all the drivers are licensed and tested drivers and take a strong stance towards safety and have excellent guidelines for users to provide extra safety. London's Met Police had highlighted this as a problem in a complaint letter to TfL, accusing Uber of failing to report allegations of serious crimes including sex attacks.

That followed New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's failed bid in 2015 to cap the number of new drivers that could join ride-hailing companies each year out of concern that the companies were exacerbating road congestion.