22 Sep Uber loses licence to operate in London
Transport for London have said Uber will not be issued a new private hire licence in London.
Uber’s current licence expires on September 30 and TFL have rejected their application for a new one because “Uber’s approach and conduct demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility” pertaining to reporting serious criminal offences, obtaining medical certificates and driver background checks.
Uber’s use of Greyball, software aimed at avoiding ticketing by preventing regulatory bodies from gaining full access to its app, was also of concern.
The decision has been backed by Sadiq Khan, employment rights campaigners and Licensed Taxi Drivers Assoication Ltd, the main regulatory body for black-cab drivers in London.
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Although, the ride-hailing giants plan to appeal the decision, leaving them free to serve their 3.5 million customers in London until the appeal is over, a process some experts have said could take years.
Here’s Uber statement in response to the decision: “3.5 million Londoners who use our app, and more than 40,000 licensed drivers who rely on Uber to make a living, will be astounded by this decision. 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.
“If this decision stands, it will put more than 40,000 licensed drivers out of work and deprive Londoners of a convenient and affordable form of transport.
“To defend the livelihoods of all those drivers, and the consumer choice of millions of Londoners who use our app, we intend to immediately challenge this in the courts… This ban would show the world that, far from being open, London is closed to innovative companies who bring choice to consumers.”