London: Uber open to discuss concessions to continue operating in city

Share it:
Save on your hotel -

US-based taxi-hailing company Uber has indicated that it is open to discuss concessions with transport authorities to continue operating in London, days after it lost its license to ply on the streets of the UK's capital.

Transport for London (TfL) had announced last week that it would not be renewing Uber's licence after it expires on September 30 over safety concerns.

More than 625,000 people have since signed a "Save Your Uber in London" petition calling on the mayor of London Sadiq Khan to reverse the decision as the company prepares to appeal against the decision.

"We'd like to know what we can do to get this right. But that required a dialogue we haven't been able to have," Tom Elvidge, Uber's general manager in London, told 'The Sunday Times' as part of the company's conciliatory stance against TfL's verdict that it is not "fit and proper" to operate on the streets of London.

The report quoted a source close to TfL as saying that the statement could lead the way for talks with Uber on a possible solution.

It claimed that Uber's concessions were likely to involve passenger safety and employment benefits for drivers, including possible holiday pay and limits on work hours.

"By wanting to ban our app from the capital Transport for London and the mayor have caved in to a small number of people who want to restrict consumer choice. This ban would show the world that, far from being open, London is closed to innovative companies who bring choice to consumers," Elvidge had said in a statement soon after the TfL decision on Friday.

Uber is London's biggest and increasingly most popular taxi operator with more than 3 million customers and 40,000 drivers now facing an uncertain future.

Meanwhile, the London mayor urged the thousands of people who had signed a petition against the ban to "direct their anger" at the firm.

"I have every sympathy with Uber drivers and customers affected by this decision but their anger really should be directed at Uber. They have let down their drivers and customers by failing, in the view of TfL, to act as a fit and proper operator," Khan said in his latest statement.

"I suspect it will take some time before this situation with Uber fully plays out," Khan said.

Uber's licence expires on September 30 from which date the firm will have 21 days to appeal.

According to UK media reports, the firm plans to launch legal proceedings against TfL on Thursday.

In its ruling, TfL had raised concerns over Uber's approach to reporting serious criminal offences and how it obtained enhanced criminal records checks for drivers.

It flagged up Uber's approach to how medical certificates were obtained for example drivers using an online GP service via video rather than having a check in person as the regulations insist.

The transport body also queried Uber's use of Greyball software, which could be used to block regulators' access to the app.

The company has already been forced to leave several countries, including Denmark and Hungary, and has faced regulatory battles in multiple US states and countries around the world.
Share it:


Post A Comment: