Uber and Cabify have decided to suspend their operations in Barcelona from tomorrow. The decision came after the Catalan government rolled out new rules, which require the vehicles to be booked with minimal notice of 15 minutes. The government has taken this step, following the continuous pressure from taxi drivers, who have been striking to demand greater controls to govern so-called private vehicles with driver (VTC).
While speaking to media, an Uber spokesman said that the latest rules imposed by Catalan government have forced them to suspend UberX while they assess their future in Barcelona. He mentioned that the company is committed to stay a long-term partner to Spanish cities and look forward to work with the government for fair regulation for all.
Soon after Uber’s announcement, the company’s Spanish rival Cabify said that it was following suit and blamed the Catalan government for subsiding to the demands and pressure of the taxi industry, hampering the interests of citizens.
Cabify claimed to have a million users in Barcelona, and mentioned that 98.5% of its vehicles are booked within 15 minutes’ notice.
It added that after going through the latest official rules, the company has concluded that the new regulation has been posed as an aftereffect of the direct expulsion of the Cabify app and its partner companies in Barcelona and Catalonia.
Speaking on the matter, a Spain based association of transport companies Unauto VTC said that the adoption of latest regulation could put 3,000 jobs at risk in Barcelona. Uber hasn’t mention the number the number of drivers working for it in Barcelona.
Earlier, Unauto VTC criticized the Catalonia regional government for surrendering to taxi drivers’ blackmailing, who are again on the ride to kidnap Barcelona and are using violence to save their monopoly.
Madrid taxi drivers have been on strike for over ten days now in a bid to secure bigger regulation of their troublesome contenders.
Mohit Loshali, an experienced campaigner, writes about the latest evolutions and trends in the automotive and allied domains. He has helped clients from across the globe with his thought-provoking research and analysis.