Uber Taiwan yesterday urged the government to consider its proposal instead of implementing heavy-handed measures aimed at protecting the taxi industry that it said would stifle innovation.
The Ministry of Transportation and Communications last month proposed changes to regulations covering the rental car industry — including prohibiting trips of less than one hour and providing any form of discounts or promotional deals to customers, as well as requiring rental vehicles to “return to the garage” between trips — that could spell doom for Uber’s ride-hailing business model, the company said.
The proposed changes are anti-competitive and would damage the livelihoods of 10,000 Uber drivers and their families, as well as restrict choice for 3 million regular Uber users in Taiwan, it said.
The proposed changes are currently in a 60-day consultation period.
To find a solution for all stakeholders, Uber proposed an “e-hail multipurpose vehicle plan” that would allow customers to book a taxi or rental car through an app, a practice that it said has become increasingly popular with millions of people worldwide.
This would provide a “win-win” situation for taxis and rental car operators and drivers, while also giving passengers choice, the company said.
“While we understand the government’s efforts to protect the taxi industry, it should not be at the expense of the many thousands of drivers and operators who run fully legal businesses under the current rental car laws,” Uber Taiwan general manager Willy Wu (吳罡) said in a statement.
Uber said that it has since 2017 partnered with rental car and taxi companies and has adapted its business model to ensure that it is fully compliant with the ministry’s guidelines, adding that it has improved the businesses of other taxi fleets through partnerships.
Alphabet Inc’s Google on Tuesday announced plans to buy a New York office building for US$2.1 billion, confirming its push into the US’ largest city despite the COVID-19 teleworking trend. This is the largest real-estate purchase in the US for an office building since the beginning of the global spread of COVID-19, the Wall Street Journal quoted Real Capital Analytics as saying. Google already rents the premises in Manhattan, which are located on the site of a former railroad terminal in the Hudson Square neighborhood. The Silicon Valley giant envisions a campus with a total surface area of 160,000m2 by mid-2023
‘CORE VALUES’: The contract chipmaker did not specify why the employees were dismissed, but media reports said they had leaked information about customer orders Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) has fired seven of its employees for violating the company’s “core values,” the world’s largest contract chipmaker said yesterday. While the company did not disclose exactly why it fired the seven employees, local media reports earlier in the day said that the employees had leaked confidential information about customer orders. In a statement, the company said that it fired the seven at once, adding that it released an internal notice last week to inform the entire company of the move ahead of the four-day Mid-Autumn Festival holilday, which ended on Tuesday. TSMC said it fired the seven
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DOWNCYCLE: Most buyers are wary about placing new orders, and although the decline could also be as little as 3%, it would be the first drop since the start of the year The average selling price of DRAM chips next quarter is expected to decline by up to 8 percent quarter-on-quarter, with memory chips used in notebook computers and consumer electronics seeing the steepest decline due to excess inventory and a shortage of components, market researcher TrendForce Corp (集邦科技) said yesterday. That means the DRAM industry is entering a new downcycle after experiencing a boom for three quarters, the longest uptrend in the history of the industry. The Taipei-based researcher said it expects the balance between supply and demand to begin tilting toward a surplus in the final quarter of this year. Most DRAM